tribes have many myths of the spirits of the land.
One of the most fearsome is
It is the spirit that you
always feel watching you as you move through he deep woods.
Occassionally you may catch a
glimpse of his war-painted face as he peeks around a tree.
He appears often near rushing
water, using the sound to cover his approach, then when close enough, he pushed the
hapless victim into the water. The bokwus also takes the spirits of the drowned to his
home in the forest as soon as they are freed from their bodies.
What he does with them there,
no one knows.
A group of fairies called the
nagumwasuck are well know to the Passamaquoddy indian tribe. These spirits though ugly,
are very helpful and create good luck in all of the tribe's activities. They are rarely
seen, since their ugly appearance makes them very self-conscious. So whenever there is a
human about they quickly dodge out of sight.
In the deep subterranean caves of North America there live the outdoors, a race of small
tribal people very much like Indians. They have many magical powers which they use to keep
certain gigantic earth spirits and demons from emerging and devastating the earth.
Among the Algonquin Indians of North Eastern United States and Canada, there is the myth
of the Manitou. the Manitou is a stoic race of faerie folk who live in tribes similar to
the Indians. They can be recognized by the small horns or antlers on their foreheads.
Though neither particularly kind to the tribes in their areas, they were neither as
malicious as some of the traditional faeries. They were often depicted as being
tricksters. One Manitou whose original name: Wee-sa-kee-jac, has been
Whisky-Jack, was said to have the head of the coyotee, and was especially known for his
tricks. The Manitou possessed strong magic, which the Indians believed came from their music,
produced through drumming.
The Winter When the
It was the Winter when
the Stars fell. The white men said it was November 12th, 1833. It was our Month of the
Snapping Trees. The evening started quietly; the stars and constellations turning slowly
silently overhead. Every now and then a meteor, like a falling star, would streak across
the heavens as on any evening. But this was to be no ordinary night. For now there were
falling stars everywhere, and then more; thousands every minute. Beyond all counting.
the winged ones stirred and moaned and no one slept that night. Our wise men said it was a
bad sign, that the falling stars were like the white men falling by the thousands upon our
land, coming at first a few at a time, but now coming in great steams, pouring from the
east upon the lands promised to us for all time, and still they came. And our wise men
were right, for we heard that the white man's president, Andrew Jackson, who was proud of
fighting Indians, said that very year, "Those Indian tribes cannot exist near our
settlements. They have neither the intelligence, the industry, the moral habits, nor a
desire for improvement. Established in the midst of our superior race, they must
necessarily yield to the force of circumstances and ere long disappear."
Could the ashes of the council fires that once stretched across this continent be given
the power to speak, what stories they would tell; stories about the time long ago when the
world was young, when animals could speak and share their wisdom with us.
"The utmost good faith shall always be observed towards the Indians: their lands and
property shall never be taken from them." U.S. Congress, 1789.
"No white person
or persons shall be permitted to settle upon, to occupy, or to pass through any portion of
this territory without the consent of the Indians." Treaty of 1868
Santanta...Kiowa (who committed suicide while in captivity)
"The soldiers cut
down the trees; they kill the buffalo and when I see that, my heart feels like bursting.
Has the white man
become a child that he should recklessly kill and not eat?"
General Phil Sheridan "The only good Indians I ever saw were dead."
Red Jacket, Seneca "We were born naked and have been taught to hunt and live on game.
You tell us that we must learn to farm, live in one house and take on your ways. Suppose
the people living beyond the great sea should come and tell YOU that you must stop
farming, and kill YOUR cattle and take YOUR houses and lands!
What would you do?
Would you not fight them?"
"They talked and talked for days, but it was just like the wind blowing in the
Black Elk, Sioux
"Brother, you say there is but one way to worship and serve the Great Spirit. If
there is but one religion, why do you white people differ so much about it? We also have a
religion, which was given to our forefathers. It teaches us to be thankful for all the
gifts we receive and to love each other. We never quarrel about religion. Brother, we do
not wish to destroy your religion, or take it from you, we only want to follow our
General John Chivington, who led the Sand Creek Massacre, "Damn any man who
sympathizes with Indians! I have come to KILL Indians, and believe it is right and
honorable to use any means under God's heaven to kill Indians."
The world has
grown older now, bowed with many winter snows. The ground is no longer young. It is the
dust and blood of our ancestors. But the stories are like the stars, they never change.
The voices pause, there is scarcely any twilight left. The dying fires seem to draw inward
a cool night wind from all directions and on that wind come voices.
There must always be stories. But now, the wind and voices whisper, their
wind song now
among the stars. I look upward to the stars, into the fire and beyond. I do not forget the
stories, nor the stars.
Brookie M. Craig
What is a Warrior?
A Warrior is the protector of
his family, clan and his tribe.
A Warrior is the guardian,
of the old ways so that,
they are not forgotten.
A Warrior is not motivated by
greed, political ambition or
A Warrior will not put himself
above others in need.
And above all,
A Warrior is the living spirit of
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