Rita Walker (Blog Fourteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Fourteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

In 1974 Spanish pilot and marine officer Juan Pérez was the first European to discover the Haida Gwaii but bad weather stopped him from landing and claiming it for Spain.   James Cook, Captain of the Royal navy was the first European known to visit the Haida Nation.  Archaeology digs have determined the Haida have been living on the Haida Gwaii islands from 6000 to 8000 years ago.

https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/haida-gwaii

https://www.raconteur.net/business-innovation/cobalt-mining-human-rights

https://norse-mythology.org/gods-and-creatures/giants/aegir-and-ran/

https://www.historymuseum.ca/cmc/exhibitions/aborig/haida/havwa01e.html

As she drives home from the college the sky is dark and clear.  A song she hasn’t heard in a long time comes on.  Chalk Circle’s “This Mourning” gets her tapping her hands against the steering wheel.  It reminds her why Kaneki needs to go back to Centre Earth.

The weeping willow string she planted is growing little nubs that she hopes will grow into tiny branches.  It was wonderful that Kaylee asked her to teach a Haida language course three times a week along with her once a week Environmental Technology class.  She knows she’ll be financially stable for the next three years.  Her real focus though is on what she does at night.  So with a cup of licorice tea she sits in front of her window in her kitchenette and concentrates on the tiny willow sapling.  A quarter moon shines through her window awakening the elemental inside her.  She could control its pull for her to change but tonight she wants to transform.  Her eyes remain open but become unfocused.

She finds herself at Soper Park.  Before her Oya is dressed ready for action.

“What do you want child?” Oya asks in an exasperated voice.

“To visit Rán.”

“This is a bad time for me child of Ailbe Rose.  I must deal with Kaneki’s influence on mining for cobalt in the Congo.   Think of Island and go!”

To Icelanders their home is known as Island.  It’s where her grandfather wanted to return to.

When Rita was five her father took the family to Kiusta at the northern tip of Haida Gwaii.  Taking her hand he led her to the shore where the ruins of a long boat rested near a group of ancient totem poles.  “My father, your grandfather arrived on this boat.  He was nearly dead when they brought him to a sweat lodge and your grandmother nursed him to health.  He came from far far away.  You and I have his eyes whereas your brother has pure Haida eyes like your mother.  I would find him staring at this ruin as we worked on his new boat.  I think he would have stayed if your grandmother had not died during the Tsimshian raid.”

Rita only remembers her father’s father vaguely.  Tall and strong, with long brown hair and a red beard that flowed to his chest.  His voice was loud sometimes but more often hushed as though his soul were broken.  By the fire pit he would stare at her but with his chin turned slightly away.  It made her feel as if he was watching her wearily.  His Haida Gwaii words were clipped and often he added words she had never heard before.  He always kept his distance from her.  “There is something else in this child,” she would hear him say to both her mother and father at different times.  He would shake his shaggy head afterwards and stare at her out of the corner of his eyes.

When she was four her father’s father had taken dry fish and fresh water onto his new boat with its many ribs.  “Someday others like me will come,” he warned before he paddled north towards the Bering Sea.  In the distance Rita remembered seeing him unfurl the strange red and white curving sail his mother had helped him sew.  He was right others like him would arrive at Haida Gwaii but Rita wouldn’t learn about that until later.

Her vision becomes cloudy.  As the cloud dissipates she can see Rán walking in modern clothes by a river.    Rán stops and turns to her with a beaming smile.  Rita realizes Kaneki has not made his presence known as much on Iceland—yet.

Gunnhildur as Rán for Rita Walker November 9 2019 by Freyr Holldorsson
Gunnhildur as Rán for Rita Walker November 9 2019 by Freyr Holldorsson

“What can I do for you Rita?” Rán asks in her boisterous voice.

Gunnhildur as Rán for Rita Walker November 9 2019 3 by Freyr Holldorsson
Gunnhildur as Rán for Rita Walker November 9 2019 3 by Freyr Holldorsson

“Do you have student named Marlo?”

“I do.  When you change you can watch him by the lake near where you live.  He is with you Rita that I can assure you.”

“Thank you, Rán,” Rita says as Rán fades away and she feels herself changing.

Rita Walker (Blog Thirteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Thirteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

The type of soil and climate found in a particular area will determine what plants will grow best in that location.  In Brantford the soil is mostly Luvisolic:  a mixture of clay, silt, and sand.  Clayey Gleysolic and Gray Brown Luvisolic are the main soils with the major crops being corn, soy, and tobacco.

https://soilsofcanada.ca/

http://ecozones.ca/english/region/135.html

https://www.gardenguides.com/128379-types-soil-ontario.html

https://soilsofcanada.ca/orders/luvisolic.php

https://www.thespruce.com/what-is-loam-1401908

 

Rita looks up at the students in her class and sighs.  She counts sixteen students and only one of the five she expected.  As she met each of the Ancients, though she only saw Rae, they gave her the ability to see an aura on the very rare occasion her path connected with another elemental’s.  She sees a blue hue around a tall man with dark dreadlocks and trimmed beard.  “Water,” she whispers.  His head tilts to the side as she speaks the word and she knows he has heard her.

“Soil is composed of many different chemicals and organisms.  The type of each is determined by the composition of the minerals in a given area.  Wind blows soil and glaciers move large chunks of it.  And what else is soil?   It is the by-product of death and waste.  When leaves die and fall off a tree or as plants wither and decay they decompose—into soil.    Whatever your body doesn’t use must come out as waste products.  In the natural pattern everything dies and everything is used to help the growth of life.”

“We’re going to focus on the soil in Brantford.”    Rita moves to the side of large screen behind her and clicks a button on a remote.  An image of Canada with multiple colours appears representing the different soil types and where they are located.  She uses the pointer of the remote and points a red dot to the area where Brantford is on the map.  “The yellow represents Luvisolic soil.  Glaciers pulverized the soil so that the dominant minerals are calcium and magnesium leaving the top soil as predominantly loamy or clay.  Loamy soil is a mixture of clay, silt, and sand.  Clay and silt help keep in the water while sand creates gaps for better root growth.

“Farmers use both cattle and human manure to fertile the soil.  That will be our next lecture.  Are there any questions?”

The man with the blue aura raises his hand.

“Yes?” Rita asks.

“What happens when the soil is polluted?” he asks in a voice that is both soft and deep, “and what about soil microorganisms?”

“That’s coming up in future lectures Mr.?”

Rita Walker (Blog Twelve):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twelve):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

The Haida like so many other indigenous people had their children removed to learn European ways.  Midnight Oil made it clear that Australia’s treatment of indigenous people was a disgrace during the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia by wearing black coveralls with the word Sorry.  Nature has a way of diffusing the thought that any people are better than others when people of different races and backgrounds fall in love and have children.   People have different hair colour, skin colour, eye colour, physiques and yet are all the same.

https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/haida-native-group

https://www.songfacts.com/facts/midnight-oil/beds-are-burning

https://petergarrett.com.au/biography/

https://www.mohawkcollege.ca/about/campuses/six-nations-polytechnic-brantford-sb

Rita places the potted weeping willow branch into the back of her car.  With loving care she hopes it will grow.  Either in the fall or in the spring she will plant it on the schools lawn.

Midnight Oil’s “Beds Are Burning” is playing on the radio as Rita drives to the Six Nations’ Polytechnic College to organize her classroom.   She taps her fingers on the steering wheel as she sings “The time has come, a fact’s a fact/ It belongs to them, let’s give it back” along with the band’s lead singer Peter Garrett.   She read an article that at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney the band members performed with the word SORRY written across the chest of their black coveralls.  It was a blatant rebuttal of the Prime Minister at the time, John Howard, for his refusal to apologize for the former policy of removing aboriginal children from their families.  After reading the article Rita realized this destruction of aboriginal families happened all around the world, not just in Canada.  The song reminds her of how hard it is for her to keep positive.  But the world already knows about all the atrocities.  Now it’s time for everyone to focus on working together.  It’s time to show that those who were bullied are wiser and will not become the bullies.

She doesn’t think there are any songs that represent her, a half breed or multi-raced person.  Then she recalls hearing Cher singing “Half Breed” written by Mary Dean and composed by Al Capps.  She wonders, if like so many other songs and writings, did the lyricist really understand what it’s like to be a “half breed”?  Do they know what it’s like to find out one half of your ancestry was warring or abusing the other half?  She shakes her head to clear the negative thoughts away.

Sometimes life is strange.  As she pulls into the college Depeche Mode’s “People are People” comes on.  She pulls over and sings along with the band:  “It’s obvious you hate me/Though I’ve done nothing wrong/I never even met you/So what could I have done”.  Well, next week she’s about to meet four individuals who represent a hidden race of humans.  And she needs to figure out how to get them to work together.  One will be the hardest to change.  And one probably won’t want to collaborate with the others.

Inside the classroom she feels small standing at the bottom of the sloping floor gazing up at the desks that will allow the students to look down on her.  She set the potted willow on the ledge of the windows at the opposite side to the door.  Next she takes out her papers.  The first of the lessons will focus on the different soils found in different areas of Ontario and what’s being done to keep them healthy.

Rita Walker (Blog Eleven):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Eleven):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Willow trees live all around the world.  Oxygen producers, pain relief from the bark, and used to make flutes to fish traps.

https://dreamastromeanings.com/willow-tree-meaning-and-symbolism/

http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Salix+mucronata

https://goddess-files.livejournal.com/3019.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5f_fkZ3tW3U

https://goddess-files.livejournal.com/3019.html

 

Rita parks in the small gravel driveway across from the raised flower beds the city re-plants every year.   She heads towards the section of Mill Creek that flows through the park where the giant Weeping Willows grow.  When she was younger she fell asleep thinking about Rae.  But Rae did not answer, instead another ancient one appeared from Africa.

 

Her mother was telling her the Haida Creation Story.  “Raven was walking on the shore when he heard many noises coming from inside a clamshell…,” her mother was saying when Rita fell asleep thinking of Rae.

Her soul watched as she floated out of her body.  She saw her face, eyes closed, and mouth slightly open.  She saw her mother’s dark brown hair flowing over her shoulders in strands to cover the top of her deerskin shirt.  Her mother gently stroked her forehead and said, “Sleep.”  Her soul’s eyes turned upwards towards the ceiling of the tent and floated upwards by moving her arms and legs in a swimming motion.  As she swam between the Sitka spruce and Yellow cedar trees a tug to her chest pulled her down to the draping branches of a dwarf weeping willow.  She touched one of the thin leaves and found herself somewhere else.

She was hovering before a giant weeping willow with a creek flowing nearby.  As she stared, frozen in place at the willow’s gnarly trunk, a woman appeared.  So powerful and strong was the women’s presence Rita didn’t know if to flee or stare in awe.  “Child,” said the woman with raven coloured hair.  The woman’s voice had a lilt and a mixture of tenderness and strength that demanded attention as she pointed her finger at Rita.  “Why have you called me?”

Gloria Antwi as Oya and thanks to La Sab Hotel Ghana West Africa

“I was calling Rae,” Rita admitted still torn between wanting to flee and getting to know this woman better.

“Rae is healing her soul and I am with her through Raven.”

“You are connected to Raven?” Rita asks.  “I thought only the Haida knew of Raven.

“I am of the wind child–and the willow which in its many forms all around the World, both hears the wind and tells it stories–communicates with me.  When you thought of Rae she must have sent you to me instead.  I am Oya, the Yoruban Goddess of weather, and known to others like you as the Elemental Ancient One of Wind.  What do you seek from Rae?”

“She lives in the Haida Gwaii and is directly connected to my people.  So I seek wisdom from her.”

“Ah, I see.  You are not just Haida but also Irish, German, and connected directly to the Earth.  The World is round my child and that makes all things connected.  But we seek what is familiar and you are closer to Ailbe Rose than Rae.  So that may be why she will not answer you.”

“Why would someone want me to contact you Oya?” Rita asked with a slight bow.

“Some day you will meet the one who is connected to me.  Let her know that you and I have met.  The cat may eat the sparrow and the hawk may eat the rabbit but when there is a greater danger all creatures heed the warning of Raven’s call.  What argues and fights now will need to collaborate in the near future.  Unnatural things are beginning to be created out of what lies deep beneath the ground.”

 

Rita walks up to the willow she saw in her dream.  With great diligence and respect she snips a section of overhanging branch off.

Review of Cixin Liu’s “The Three-Body Problem” translated by Ken Liu

A couple of weeks ago I decided I needed to take a break from working on my own stories and read someone elses.  As I walked down the aisles at Indigo’s in Cambridge (Canada) I came across an interesting title called “The Three-Body Problem” in the science fiction section.

This is a Hugo winning story for best science fiction originally written in Chinese and later translated into English and German.

After years of reading science, fantasy, and historical fiction along with other genres I didn’t think I could find something completely original to read.  Cixin Liu’s book caught my attention and held it until the end.  I’m not an astophycisist, nor an engineer, nor a mathematician so I am grateful he does an amazing job of explaining the sophisticated scientific concepts that run throughout the book.  There is also the fascinating matter of taking me on a journey through Chinese history and way of thinking.

Ken Liu sums up the book for those of us brought up in the West in the postscript of the book:  “The English words are arranged in such a way that the reader sees a glimpse of another culture’s pattern of thinking, hears an echo of another language’s rhythms and cadences, and feels a tremor of another people’s gestures and movements.”

A marvel of a story to read outdoors, or inside across from a  large bay window, where you can glance up at the stars.

D.W.

Liu Cixin:

https://www.amazon.com/Cixin-Liu/e/B007JP96JU

Ken Liu

Home

 

Rita Walker (Blog Ten):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Ten):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

In the August 9, 2019 Waterloo Region Record there was an article called:  Rebuilding a road for tomorrow by Catherine Thompson.  By using perforated storm sewer pipes and Silva cells on Ahrens Street West the city of Kitchener was hoping to stop run off of salt and other debris from entering nearby creeks.  Currently Highway 24 or Water Street South by Churchill Park does not have a road designed to protect wildlife.  But perhaps in the near future these roads will be everywhere.

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2019/04/wildlife-overpasses-underpasses-make-animals-people-safer/

https://www.deeproot.com/products/silva-cell.html

http://www.bigorrin.org/haida_kids.htm

https://haidacultureproject.weebly.com/clothing.html

 

In the morning Rita showers off the sweat from her struggle not to change from the night before.  As the water pours over her she glances at her hands and up her left arm where the tattoos line up as a totem pole would.  Stepping out of the shower stall she stares at the mirror.  Through the mist created by the shower’s hot water she can see the shadowed images of the other tattoos on her body; each a symbol of survival or rite of passage.  Her eyes drift back to the feather symbol on her left arm.  Birds are part of the Air Elemental and today she must travel to Cambridge to meet with the Ancient One who represents the human aspect of Air.

Driving along Highway 24 in Cambridge she notices sections of the road are humped as she drives next to the Grand River and past Churchill Park.  This is a main area for turtles to cross.  The humps or mini-bridges are long so the drive is safe for cars and transport trucks.  Many years ago an innovative idea was put to the test in the city of Kitchener.  Perforated storm sewer pipes were installed under roads to lessen run off during heavy rain and to create more dispersion.  The dispersed water is captured and treated by what was then pioneering technology called Silva cells. Lightly compacted soil within the cells allowed trees to grow.  The roots of the trees help absorb and dissipate salt and other run off by-product before it reaches water sources such as creeks and rivers.  Now most road repairs are built with the environment in mind.

She glances at the feather tattoo on her left arm in the side view mirror of her leased Volkswagen e-Golf.  It reminds her of the time she saw Rae in a dream.  In the dream a female dressed in a red cedar bark dress stood on a tiny Island.  Rita watched as the woman raised her left arm.  She noticed a band around the woman’s forearm made of yellow cedar as a raven flew onto the woman’s outstretched arm.  Rita could only see the side profile of the woman and little of her face.  But the raven turned and stared directly at her.  That’s when the dream ended and she knew that she had caught a glimpse of Rae and the spirit Raven.

In the morning she had asked her mother about raven but left out Rae.

“You have strange dreams child,” her mother told her as she wove together new deerskin moccasins for Rita’s father.   “Raven may be many things, but is a protector for us above all else.  Ravens will steal food from you, have no doubt, and you should shoo them away if they try, but never hurt them. They are our protection against supernatural beings.”

As Rita drives down Shades Street towards Soper Park she wonders if the raven she saw as a child was protecting Rae from Kaneki.  But mostly she wonders why so long ago Rae allowed a glimpse of herself but so far would not communicate with Rita directly.’

Rita Walker (Blog Nine):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Nine):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Airmid is a Tuath Dé Danann and the goddess of herbs.  Only she knows the three hundred and sixty-five herbs that now grow all over Earth.

By decreasing industrial waste and leakage of toxic, heavy metals water ways can become cleaner and plants safer to consume.

http://www.orderwhitemoon.org/goddess/Airmid/airmid.html

https://www.hollowreedholistic.ca/blogs/test-2018/tending-the-garden-healing-the-body-a-new-old-pers/

https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/82-003-x/2008004/article/10717/6500108-eng.htm

https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/mining-materials/mining/minerals-and-metals-policy/minerals-and-metals-policy-government-canada/8690

https://healthycanadians.gc.ca/recall-alert-rappel-avis/hc-sc/2019/69596a-eng.php

She forces herself to take deep breaths as her hands clench onto her bed sheets.  The full moon calls but it’s not a good time to change.  Not just before school starts.

She remembers that after dreaming of Ailbe Rose a month passed before she dreamed of Airmid.  Her mother was hanging the kelp they had gathered earlier on long sticks while Rita gathered wild blueberries nearby.  As Rita bent over to pick a blueberry her hand brushed against a salal berry and she fainted.

She opened her soul eyes and saw a woman with long brown hair that accentuated a world loving smile.  The woman was kneeling amongst herbs that grew beside a house.  Rita gazed closer but she could not recognize any of the herbs nor the style of house.

Brenda Gabet as Airmid 5 (2)

(Thanks to Brenda Gabet, an Amazing Mother, and Fitness Instructor)

“You have met a Tuath Dé Danann already,” the woman stated in a strong voice vibrant with life.

“Airmid?” Rita asked.

The woman looked up at her with caring yet mischievous eyes.  “Yes.  You were supposed to meet Rae first but she hides from Kaneki, who seeks to be with her again, as they were when together they formed the Earth’s core.”

Brenda Gabet as Airmid 1 (2)

(Brenda Gabet as Airmid)

“Is Kaneki the tainted one?”

“He has trained the one that comes from him.  Kaneki was never meant to live above the core of the Earth but now he does, and tries to make his permanent home upon the surface where it does not belong.”  Airmid caresses the leaves of one of the unknown herbs.  “What do you know of herbs?”

“Very little,” Rita had admitted.

“What do you see when you look at my garden?”

“Plants, weeds,” Rita replies.

Airmid caresses one of the herbs with a long green leaf that’s furry on the surface.  “Sage can be used for memory improvement, digestive problems, and more.”  She touches a nearby plant with yellow petals and long, jagged leaves.  “Different parts of the dandelion can be used to make coffee, help with digestion, and pain relief.  Someday Rae will tell you of the herbs of Haida Gwaii and what they are used for.  Herbs are akin to elements.  Some, like fire, you eat to make you hot when you are too cold.  Some you drink, like water, as tinctures to cool the heat inside.  Some, you alight to flow through the air, like wind, to help you breathe.  Some, you coat your skin with, like earth, to moisturize and draw out infection.  But many of the herbs are contaminated now, by metal, like mined cadmium, mercury, arsenic and more.  Necessary in minute amounts for life but in greater quantities deadly they belong mostly deep in the ground.”

“What can I do?” Rita asks as she feels her body pulling her soul back.

“Gather the other elements.  Both learn and teach each other to find balance.”

Rita sees Airmid’s image fade as the blue sky over Haida Gwaii becomes more vibrant from where she lies amongst the blueberries and salal.

Rita Walker (Blog Eight):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Eight):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker is a science fiction blog about the interaction of technology and the environment, and an introduction to North American Indigenous ways.   Each distinct environment: grassland, snow, mountainous, desert, boreal forest, swamp, rain forest, and so on will decide the best methods of housing, food supply, and culture.

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Native-American/The-Arctic

Astral traveling is common around the World.  Is it the soul traveling or the subconscious creating images?  That is for you to decide.

https://www.healyourlife.com/astral-projection-101-a-powerful-secret-from-native-cultures

 

Memories flood through her as she continues to twist and turn fighting off the impulse to become what the Earth wants her to this night.  She remembers that after the dream of the Tuath Dé Danann she was sleeping in her parent’s tent when her soul traveled across North America, over Greenland and Iceland, across the Atlantic Ocean into Northern Ireland.  Places she has never been.  Her speed slowed to a walking pace as she reached a tall hedge of Ilex Crenata.  Its early afternoon and people are walking amongst nearby flower beds but none seem to notice her, nor a tall woman in an olive green dress wearing a wreath of white flowers.  Rita’s soul halted as the woman turned and stared directly at her.    This woman had green eyes that emitted a depth she could barely comprehend.

Leah Weir as Ailbe Rose Kimberely Lee Photography 2 use

Thanks to Leah Weir and Kimberley Lee Photography https://www.kimberleyleephotography.co.uk/

In the dream she became material and her bare feet pressed into the grass.  She had glanced around and noticed there were no longer any other people around.  “Ailbe Rose,” she said in awe and respect to the women with the green eyes, “Mother Terra.”

“You are ready to learn the Change child,” Ailbe told her in a rich Irish accent.  “And though you are mostly from me you will also be the Gatherer of others from the other Ancients.  Though your soul can fly, you cannot.  Although you can swim, you cannot breathe underwater.  Although you can make fire with materials, it cannot come from you directly.  There is one left, and she is tainted.  Although you can hammer and heat metals and can combine some, you cannot do it with your thoughts alone.  She can, and you must turn her against the Ancient One who has encouraged the destructive nature of industry for too long.   Bring all these elementals together and teach them to work together.  That is your task.”

Rita watched as Ailbe Rose grabbed up soil from where it was available under the hedge.

Leah Weir as Ailbe Rose picture by Kimberley Lee Photography

 

Thanks to Leah Weir and Kimberley Lee Photography https://www.kimberleyleephotography.co.uk/

“You are an Earth Elemental, as well as Haida, Irish, and German.  Soon you will meet Airmid and learn that all life is interconnected.  Stretch out your hand.”  Rita does and Ailbe places the soil in her palm.  “Change is easiest during a full moon but you can change at other times.  The closer to a full moon the longer the change can last.  Without soil you can only change partially, remember this.  Close your eyes.”

Rita had taken in a deep breath and exhaled as she closed her eyes.

“Picture a land animal, a mouse, a cat, a beaver.   You cannot become a seal, but you can turn into a snake, though not a sea snake, nor an eel.  You can only become a large dog, a wolf, a deer, a moose, a bear or any other large to giant land creature during a full moon.”

“A cat,” Rita had whispered.  She pictured a tabby cat with her mind.  As she focused the soil in her hand had grown heavier and increased in amount.  It hurt and her eyes had bulged.

“Breathe child,” Ailbe told her with a voice gentle and full of encouragement.

It hurts so much as her body changed that she gave out a cry.  But the sound was that of a cat.  She had looked up and up until she saw the smiling face of Ailbe.

“The pain will grow less as your body grows use to it.  But as your extra weight turns to soil so must it also return with as much soil.  You cannot change back where no soil is available.  Close your eyes and go home now.”

Rita remembers lying down and resting her feline chin on her left forearm.  The next moment she awoke inside her parents’ tent.

Rita Walker (Blog Seven):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Seven):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Black argillite is only found on Haida Gwaii.  The Haida artist would often carve out the design for a totem pole on the argillite rock first.

https://www.crystalcabingallery.com/blog/2018/01/27/argillite-stone-of-haida-gwaii

Native American bands have a name for the full moon of each month.  The Sturgeon full moon occurs in August.

https://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronomy-resources/native-american-full-moon-names/

Kaitlyn as tuath dé danann for Rita Walker argillite stone (2)

She clenches her eyelids closed knowing the Sturgeon moon is trying to pierce its silver light through her curtains.  Her hands clench onto her bed sheets as her body twists with desire to rip the curtains away.  It is good she lives alone now.  When she opens her eyes everything in the room is lighter and more distinguishable.  She forces her eyelids closed again and focuses on calming her breathing and her need to change.  Her thoughts wander back to her younger years.

Her parents took her and her brother to camp beside Tlell River.  While her father and brother fished for salmon her mother weaved a new hat for her farther out of cedar bark and spruce roots while watching for bears.  Bored, Rita decided to explore on her own.  Entering the cedar forest that borders much of the river she became lost.  She tried calling out in every direction but there was no reply.  Terrified she sat on a moss covered log and grabbed up a handful of soil.  She lay down on the log and exhausted slept.

In a dream she stood up from the log and opened her hand.  On her palm was a small pile of soil.  The soil levitated off her hand as tiny kernels and drifted in the moonlight towards a cavern made from the roots of an ancient redwood that stood tall and strong.  Mystified by the floating soil, Rita followed it into the maw of the cavern where it pulsed with light.  Inside she heard breathing and turned abruptly to her right.  She saw a young woman wearing the same type of cloak as the Vilas.  The woman’s dark hair and stern eyes told Rita that this was a Tuath Dé Danann.  The young woman held out a necklace made of argillite stones.  Rita’s hands shook as she gently took the necklace and clasped it around her neck.  To her horror the necklace buried itself into her skin and attached itself to her collarbone.   In a hypnotic voice with an Irish accent the young woman in the cloak told her, “When the Salmon Moon arrives you will dream of the ancient one Ailbe Rose and she will bless you so you may change for real.  Soon after that you must call upon Rae, for she is originally from here and will guide you well through these lands.   For now see little one, see with feline eyes but let neither wolf nor bear catch sight of you.”

That’s the first time Rita’s vision changed so everything became brighter in the night.  She found her family’s tent but did not go near until her sight returned to normal.

Rita Walker (Blog Six):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Six):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

An interesting twist.  The Haida believe that animals are more intelligent than humans and can transform into human form.  If you are from the Haida it would be good to hear from you.   Why have we included Indio’s (Gordon Peterson) song Hard Sun?  We’ll leave that up to you to figure out.

Andraya as Vilas for Rita Walker (2)

https://prezi.com/vy0c2vx1kudj/the-haida-tribe-spiritual-beliefs/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1tVvQUAcf4

Lying in her bed Rita stares at the black cloth of the curtain that blocks the view of the night sky.  Soon she will pull the curtain back but not yet.  She turns off the lamp beside her bed and stares up into the darkness of the room.  She thinks of the Indio song Hard Sun, and the verse:  When I look to leave her I always stagger back again.  The song reminds her of the first time her world changed.

She was born in Haida Gwaii to parents with ancestry in both Haida and the Vikings, and something else that her parents never discussed with her.   She was a little girl when she learned of her difference.  What she thought was unique she later discovered to be very rare.  Lying in a four person tent with her parents and older brother in the Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, with the rain pitter-pattering against the tent’s canvas, she dreamt.

She crawled along one of the nearby trails on her hands and knees with her blanket over her back.  In the dream she needed to move like this during the night in order to sleep.  Occasionally she would nap on her blanket then continue crawling.

The dawn light awoke her but she was not sleeping in the tent.  She grabbed her blanket and stood up.  Looking back at the trail she had crawled along she saw the imprint of a cat’s paws as far back as she could see.  She ran back to her parent’s tent.  Peering into the tent she saw they were all asleep.  She did not want to disturb their slumber so rolled into her blanket near the fire pit her father had made.  The second dream that night was the one that changed her forever.

She stood in a field of deciduous and coniferous trees.  Near her a young woman in a blue cloak stood.  Rita just knew she was one of two sisters.  This sister was a Vilas who answers to the Ailbe Rose, an ancient being who resides in Ireland.  Rita had stared wide eyed as the Vilas picked up soil from the ground with one hand and took one of Rita’s with the other.  The Vilas turned her hand with the soil over and let it pour into Rita’s.  When Rita’s hand was full so that the extra soil flowed off her hand back to the ground the Vilas closed Rita’s hand over the soil remaining.  When Rita opened her hand with the soil there was nothing there and the dream ended.