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Deer Spirit

by Mike Pedde

The night sky dawned crisp and clear, the blackness brushing away the last vestiges of twilight and tucking the sun finally to bed. I looked up at the pinpricks that had formed in the velvet covering the dome of the earth and saw our Grandmother, Nokomis hanging full and bright - a reverse silhouette in an autumn sky. Gathering my implements, I headed out into the chill of the night air to seek an audience with her. The time of the full moon is seen as a time of strength and solidarity for women, and although I do not menstruate in this lifetime, I wanted to pay homage to the female side of myself.

I started off down the road, wrapped in my own thoughts, when I heard a rustle to my left. Spinning around, I saw a flash of white as the tail of a buck danced into the night. I stopped and spoke to him, and he too stopped. Speaking softly, I told him who I was and not to be afraid for I would bring him no harm that night. We shared a moment, standing there, and I joined my spirit with his and we ran together. I could feel my legs tighten as we ran, cells crying for oxygen. My heart and lungs screamed with exhilaration. On and on we went, gliding quietly through the forest, whispering past trees. In time we emerged into a clearing, a place to rest. Thanking my friend, I returned to myself and continued my journey down the road. As I walked, I remembered the spirit deer that came to me first at the Petroglyph site. I was intrigued by the thought that although my spirit is that of the wolf, it is a deer that watches over me. It seemed to represent a kind of balance, the deer feeding the wolf and the wolf keeping the deer strong.

Turning from the road, I continued down the path leading to the forest and began looking for a place to sit. As I entered the woods, I saw a place where a break in the trees allowed our Grandmother to shine a white circle on the forest floor. It was there that I set down my blanket and arranged my things before settling myself to the ground as well. There was hardly a whisper of wind, and the candle flame cut upward, illuminating the night. I laid out my pipe, looked up into the night, and began my conversation.


Copyright Mike Pedde
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