Father and Mother and Me (Seneca Sweat)

Father and Mother and Me (Seneca Sweat)

Hal “Grey Eagle” and Elaine “Gentle Earth Woman” Hubbard were teachers from the Wolf Clan of the Seneca nation. In the piney woods outside Beaumont, they introduced me to the ceremonies of the sweatlodge and the pipe, Mother Earth and Father Sky, and the Lakota expression that translates, “All my relations.”

Sitting down on a Texas field,
Circled around by the tall pine trees,
Smoke rises up from the earth to the sky.
Father and Mother and me.

Father is not your average guy.
He listens to birds and he talks to stones.
As long as he stands where the four winds blow,
Father is never alone.

Mother is kin to the moon and the soil.
She nurses the plants with her loving hands.
She swears that the time is not too far off
We all will return to the land.

When Mother says, “All my relations,”
She’s speaking to everything she can see:
The earth and the heavens, the birds and the bees
And Father and Mother and me.

Tending the fire for the sacred sweat.
My brothers the rocks open up their hearts.
From the sun to the trees to the stones to my skin,
We take and we give our parts.

Taking a breath from the sacred pipe,
Sending our prayers up to Father’s door.
The circle’s completed, when out of the East
The shape of an eagle soars.

When Father says, “All my relations,”
He’s speaking to everything he can see:
The wingeds, the leggeds, the races and nations,
And Father and Mother and me.

Father and Mother have made me at home,
Shown me my place on the family tree,
Put into words things I’d always known
About living and all we can be.
Living and all we can be.

When my parents say “All my relations,”
They’re speaking to everyone they can see:
The dead, the unborn of seven generations
And Father and Mother and me.

Sitting down on a Texas field,
Circled around by the tall pine trees,
Smoke rises up from the earth to the sky.
Father and Mother and me.

Bluebonnet Border SkinnyWords and music © 1992 by Steve Brooks and Frog Records
(512) 440-7668
steve@stevebrooks.net
www.stevebrooks.net

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