The Feather

Magpies perched a craggy branch,
The canyon shimmered far below.
Mountain breasts of mother earth,
Dusted by spring’s last breath of snow.
The smell of the air was crisp and clean,
Ages carried upon a gentle breeze.
Ancestors chanted their sacred songs,
Verses rustled last autumn’s dried leaves.
There is a point in one’s dream quest,
Where the spirits meet together,
A council called to pass the pipe,
As a young man receives a feather.
In the twilight of the departing day,
Rose I to inhale this dreamer’s smoke.
To stand as a wondering fearful child,
A sapling to become a full grown oak.
Passed before me in ghostly dance,
The coyote – the buffalo, elk, and deer,
To remind me through this journey of time,
Life is carried on the point of a spear.
I felt the prick of a giant claw,
A mere touch of a talon upon my skin,
The Great Spirit ordered the eagle summoned,
To clasp my seeking mortal heart within.
Thus he held me in soaring flight,
Until the earth began to fade away,
He whispered to me among the gathered stars,
Then, returned before the first light of day.
The eagle grasped his mottled chest,
Plucked a feather and cast it to the air.
It floated over the canyons stony depths,
Landing in the dark below I knew not where.
He said, “The feather is but a symbol,
The path you take the feather’s flight,
As in the dark you slumber until dawn,
The feather is your path to light.”
He placed me in deep peaceful sleep,
Upon the rocky ledge where I began,
This timeless passage one must travel,
When, a boy attempts to become a man.
Awakening from the night dream sleep,
All creation called out my name.
I gazed about me with the sun’s first rays,
But the place I lay was not the same.
There was a melody of joy about the hills,
A crown of light over where I stood,
A feeling of knowledge and wonderment,
Of belonging, of feeling all that is, was good.
Raising my arms to praise the sun’s warmth,
I looked and saw a feather in my hand.
The Great Spirit’s voice echoed in my mind,
“Go my son, for now among the people – you are a man.”

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