January 31, 2020
“I am Talks-with-a-smile, and I am one of the four nations. I am old now, but it was not always so. Because I am old, I have many scars from when I was not so. Because of my scars I know many things, but I also do not know many other things.
I like to go out in the darkness of the morning and watch the rising of the morning star. When I see it many things that seemed confusing during the time of the moon become less troubling, and I learn new things.
It was in the time of the new grass and the snows had gone to the north that I went out to welcome the morning star. But when I looked to the east the sky was dark, and the light was slow to come. The sky was boiling and angry light danced inside of it. A light wind blew into one ear, and then blew into the other and it whispered to me. I could not understand the words for they were mixed up.
I thought that I must go to the top of the hill nearby and taste the wind where it blew stronger and I could hear the message that it had within it. I stood on the hill and faced the east, and the wind blew only a little stronger. It whispered and I listened hard. The wind told me that a storm was coming. It told me that it would be fierce and that it would bring danger with it. It told me that when the wind blew, I should stand tall against it. It told me when the skies poured its anger upon me that I should stand tall. It told me that when the lightning flashed that I should stand tall or I would become a part of the storm.
I told my people of the message that I had heard in the wind. Some listened and began to prepare for the fierce storm. Others laughed and told me that I was a foolish old man, but the storm came. It swept in from the east which was strange for storms usually were brought by the spirits of the west and are good for they bring the tall grass and the water to fill our streams and rivers. But this storm was stronger than any that I had seen before. It was so strong that many cried out, and they made offerings to the storm to save them.
I reminded them that they must stand tall and not be afraid or that they would become the storm. Some listened and stood tall with me. Others beat their breasts and lamented, not understanding why the spirits would punish them. One by one they became the storm and raged with it and were swept away. I stood tall, and although I beheld the storm all around me the storm had no strength against me.
The storm raged for days until all that lamented became the storm, only then did the storm fade away. I stood tall.
Many things that I had known disappeared in the storm, and many things in my world were different after the storm than they had been before and I had many new things to learn.”