Joy Harjo posts reports here on her trips and other happenings.
This morning I received a post of a prediction. It's startling, sad and a hellish vision, but it's nothing I haven't heard before from visionaries from our tribal nations. I've heard these similar predictions from tribal people all over the world and others who still remember what it means to be human.
Many of us walk through the days heavy with grief. The drug companies who have incorporated not for healing but for money tell us they can make us happy. Just take a pill or two every day and we will be happy. Or we have a drink or a sniff or a smoke of something to forget. We have forgotten that this is the spirit world, that everything we think and do matters. We have forgotten that we are a part of this earth, we have forgotten that we are integral to the working of a system that runs with acknowledgement, gratitude and service to others. Those aren't "sexy" terms these days, they never have been, especially in these recent years in this society developed to sell things. We have forgotten who we really are, that each of us carries gifts to be brought and developed, no matter who we are--each utterly matters.
The shine has to come from within. You can dress up a piece of plastic and give it a name and a high price and people will hunger, desire to own it.
I heard my tribesman Phillip Deere speak years ago as we all thought about who we are and who we were becoming. We would have been shocked to think then that we would be buying water out of bottles. He said many of these same things spoken by Mr. Has-No-Horses because he, painfully, saw them and wanted us to remember that we are spiritual human beings with a reason for the path here in this place. The question we need to ask is what condition is our spiritual? Spiritual is the above-the-ground forces and elements, the below-the-ground, the where-we-are-walking, the inside-of-us, the outstide-of-us, the all-around-us. We just have to look at the condition of our body: this earth. And we have to come together.
It's a terrible joke about all the infighting we have in our tribes. We can't even speak with one heart in our tribal nations. It's the same everywhere, Oklahoma, California or Hawaii. This is where our power resides, to survive or continue through compassion for each other. Maybe we've grown addicted to fighting, to jealousy. We've forgotten how to act.
This morning I will remember to walk more carefully, think more carefully and address this earth I walk on, tenderly; address the skies, tenderly; address my human, bird, animal, plant, and mineral neighbors, tenderly; address you, tenderly, and myself, tenderly.
from the transcript of the Regular October Session
(October 4, 2005)
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council Proceedings at
Eagle Butte, South
OCTOBER 17, 2005
"ROBERT WALTERS: Mr. Chairman, thank you and
Council, with us is Sidney Has-No-Horses. He is a
medicine man from Oglala and Mr. Chariman, he has a
message that he's going to all the tribes, all the
reservations with that came out of a ceremony and I
feel it's a good message. I visited Mr.Has-No-Horses
and so at this time, I'd like to get the floor for
"Mitakuye Oyasin. All my relatives.
"I'd like to get in the middle if I could, I
really don't like to use the mic.
"My name is Sidney Has-No-Horses. I'm from the
Pine Ridge Reservation. You probably know my father,
his name was Dawson Has-No-Horses. He was a yuwipi
man, a powerful medicine man. My grandfather's name is
Frank Fools Crow. He was also a powerful medicine man.
"Six months ago, we had a ceremony, in this
ceremony, two angels came to me and they talked to me
and they told us of the devastation that would happen
to the islands and the Indian Ocean.
"They told us of the earthquakes that would hit
"They told us of the earthquakes that will hit
South American and they also told us of the Tsunami
that wiped out all the people and they told us of the
hurricanes that came to Florida, the one that came to
New Orleans and the one that went to Texas. There's
one more hurricane coming to wipe out another city.
Two weeks ago, we had a ceremony, Sitting Bull came in
and he talked to me; Crazy Horse, he talked to me;
Chief Big Foot talked to me and they asked me to go to
the Seven Council Fires and to the
Council People and to warn all of these Fires, within
six months. There's going to be a tidal wave that's
going to wipe out Los Angeles. Within six months,
there's going to be an eruption in the northwest with
"Two eruptions within six months. They say from the
eruptions of these volcanoes, the ash is coming, the
Missouri River will be destroyed.
They say the water that we drink from the ground is
going to be no longer drinkable.
These hardships are coming because Gold is bringing
this. Whether you believe in Christianity, Native
American Church or the traditional way, if you read
the Bible, we are going into the fourth seal. There's
diseasescoming that are going to wipe out our children
and like this man said here, meth -mehaphetamine on
our rez is very bad too. If we don't stop that,
it's going to destroy the next generation. Many
vegetables are going to be born into our tribes. When
I'm done here, I am going to Standing Rock
[Reservation] and I am going to stand in front of
them, their council and tell them the same thing I am
telling you now. This winter is going to be very cold
for a long time. Ranchers are going to lose their
cows because it is not going to warm up. The price of
propane is going to skyrocket and sometimes they are
not going to be able to deliver the propane to our
families. This food issue in the Bible, it says one
day there will be no food in the store's shelves. If
you look at the hurricane, a lot of the stores, < BR>there's no food on the shelves.
"These people lost their homes. They can't drink the
water and so I come because of the mighty chiefs that
talked to me and because of who I am. They tell me, I
need to warn the tribes.
"Today, I came here without announcement, but to see
you all gathered like this, I know God is on my side
to see you gathered. The Sisseton-Wahpeton tomorrow
will be gathered at 10 o'clock and they will hear what
I have to say. The Flandreau people are going to be
waiting for me tomorrow evening. I 'm going up to Fort
Yates here, I'm going to talk to them even if it's
after hours and so I thank you very much for letting
me come in and I'm thankful that I got all of you
together at the same time. I offer you all a
handshake. My name is Sidney Has-No-Horses. I'm from
Batesland, South Dakota. You might want to write this
down. My phone number is (removed). We incorporated
ourselves through the State of South Dakota to let you
know that we are serious. Within six months, we are
going to be
living in hell of a world and these chiefs have talked
to me, and my cousins. If you ever want a ceremony,
you get ahold of us and we will bring you a ceremony
to let you believe. But the chiefs tell me, some of
have good hearts. Some of you have good mind. Some of
you have spirituality. You are the people that will
take heed on the words I bring and there's a lot of
people that didn't believe us when everything we told
them has happened and my President, Cecilia Fire
Thunder, I talked to her yesterday and she supports me
because everything I told her would happen to our
tribe has happened. The power of God, he knows what
he's bringing to us and in three years, as the keepers
of Mother Earth, if the Seven Fires do not come
together, there's going to be a meteorite that will be
coming and it's going to hit off of San Francisco and
they told us that the Seven Council Fires, these Seven
Fires never has hate and jealousy toward each other.
I've been trying to get the medicine men of Oglala to
be in unity, but they can't and now Gold asked me to
come and get all the Tribal Councils together and
all the tribes together.
"That's a very hard job that he's giving me. I'm very
nervous as I stand here in front of you, but I tried
to look you all in the eye to let you know that I'm
for real and so at this time, there are food for
things you can think about in the next six month and
this little time you have given me. I thank you. Now
I'm going to Standing Rock. I will be going to every
"Maybe the tribal members will get together and at
least the tribal presidents will have a ceremony for
all you to hear and believe in God.
"All my relatives. Mitakuye Oyasin."
RETYPED TRANSCRIPT OF THE COUNCIL PROCEEDINGS HELD IN
DAKOTA ON OCTOBER 4, 2005, REGULAR OCTOBER SESSION.
[Cheyenne River Reservation
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council
Gregg Bouland, Chairperson
P.O. Box 590
Eagle Butte, SD 57625]
Beatrice Medicine, PhD.
Hinsha Waste Agli Win
Returns Victorious With A Red Horse Woman
Dr. Medicine was committed to teaching
By Jo Hall
Wednesday, December 28, 2005 1:32 PM CST
The Mobridge area and the world lost a remarkable
woman, a dedicated teacher and one committed to
fighting for the rights of minorities and those
oppressed when Beatrice Medicine, PhD., 82, died
Monday, Dec. 19, 2005, during emergency surgery at
Medcenter One Hospital in Bismarck, N.D. Her native
name was Hinsha Waste Agli Win, which translates to
Returns Victorious With A Red Horse Woman.
She was born in Wakpala on the Standing Rock
Reservation on Aug. 1, 1923, to Martin Medicine Jr.
and Anna Grace (Gabe) Medicine. She attended the
Wakpala Public School and after graduation enrolled at
South Dakota State University in Brookings, earning a
baccalaureate degree in 1945. Further study in her
chosen field of anthropology followed at the
University of New Mexico, Michigan State University
and the University of Washington. She earned an MA
degree at Michigan State in 1954, and completed her
doctorate in 1983 at the university of Wisconsin while
Her lifelong commitment to the instruction of others
began shortly after her graduation from SDSU, when she
was hired as an instructor at Haskell Indian Institute
in Lawrence, Kan. Subsequent teaching positions
included Santo Domingo Pueblo (N.M.) Agency School,
Flandreau (S.D.) Indian School, the University of
British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia and
Mount Royal College, Calgary, Alberta, both in Canada,
the University of Montana, the University of South
Dakota, San Francisco State University, the University
of Washington, Dartmouth College, Colorado College,
Stanford University, and California State University
at Northridge, among others. She was also frequently
asked to be a visiting scholar at universities and
research institutions across the United States and
In addition to her teaching role, Dr. Medicine was
active in civic matters that affect the rights of
children, women, ethnic minorities, especially
American Indians (or as they are known in Canada,
Native or First Nations) and gay/lesbian and
She served as head of the Women's Branch of the Royal
Commission on Aboriginal Peoples for the Canadian
government, helping to draft legislation to further
protect the legal rights of Native families there.
She was actively involved in establishing American
Indian Centers in Seattle, Vancouver and Calgary, and
served as a consultant and adviser to numerous cities
and other governmental entities on social issues, as
well as public and private foundations nationwide. She
served as an expert witness in several trials
pertaining to the rights of American Indians,
including the 1974 federal case brought against the
individuals involved in the Wounded Knee take-over of
Issues of indigenous peoples across the world were of
great interest to her, and she combined presenting
American Indian ideas and concepts with learning about
other cultures, traveling to lecture and present her
research papers in Germany, Peru, Australia, New
Zealand, Yugoslavia, Portugal, the Netherlands,
Russia, Botswana, Italy, Switzerland, Lithuania and
A chance encounter on one of these trips led her to
return and create a documentary video, juxtaposing
footage of Russian hobbyists that reenact idealized
Plains Indian culture and dance with the reactions to
this shown by Lakota residents of her home community
on Standing Rock Reservation. This video had been
shown widely across the United States and Canada to
great acclaim and interest.
Dr. Medicine has received many awards including
several honorary doctorates and distinguished alumna
awards, numerous fellowships and citations, the Ohana
Award from the American Counseling Association, the
Outstanding Woman of Color Award from the National
Institute of Women of Color, an Honoring Our Allies
Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force,
and the Bronislaw Malinowski Award for Lifetime
Achievement from the Society for Applied Anthropology.
Within the last month, she was awarded the George and
Louise Spindler award for Education in Anthropology
from the American Anthropology Association. Another
less formal award of which she was perhaps more proud,
was having been the Sacred Pipe Woman at the Sun Dance
at Sitting Bull's Camp in 1977.
She was the author of two books on indigenous women
and more than 100 articles on various subjects
including bilingual education, gender studies, native
education, alcoholism and sobriety studies, art, and
ethno-history. The University of Illinois Press
published a collection of her writings entitled
"Learning to be an Anthropologist and Remaining
Native" in 2001, and Altemira Press was working with
her on an upcoming publication at the time of her
Her ongoing commitment to education and community is
shown by her work to help ensure construction of a new
public school for the Wakpala community upon her
return there after her teaching career.
At Dr. Medicine's request, there will be no services,
and the family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations
be made in her name to the American Indian College
Fund, 8333 Greenwood Boulevard, Denver, Colo. 80221.
I met Bea in the mid-seventies at one of the first conferences for native women writers held in Tsaile, Arizona near Canyon de Chelly at what was then called the Navajo Community College. Roberta Hill, Nia Francisco, Leslie Silko, Ramona Wilson, Beatrice and I were some of the participants gathered there to share our writings and to speak about the process. Her bearing was always dignified, even elegant. She spoke the truth even if it cut and she knew how to laugh and create a smart and healing laughter. I included one of her stories “Searching for the Bishop” in Reinventing the Enemy’s Language, Contemporary Native American Women’s Writings of North America, W.W. Norton, NY,1997. It remains one of my favorites as it employs quintessential native humor and wit. I was in awe of her and I still am.
May you continue to travel beautifully.