Native Joy for Real Songs

Native Joy for Real
The Songs

We’re in an immense story in a world that we are about to destroy with our inner demons of jealousy, anger, greed and fury. NATIVE JOY FOR REAL is a song sequence about that journey.

1) On the journey we encounter enemies. We struggle. We could be destroyed or we can use the power for gathering together. Whatever we choose, we will know ourselves utterly when it is finished. And whatever happens, we are in it together. There are no winners, no losers. The Last World of Fire and Trash is the anthem. It’s song, poetry and danceable.

2) Rare moments of grace illuminate, give us a little light to maneuver. They happen in the strangest of places and times: walking home at dusk, or just after dawn in a greasy spoon. The song Grace is a solo human voice singing in that last array of golden sundown in the middle of the longest winter of the year.

3) Fear assaults and can take us down. We must address this enemy head on, and in a manner so that fear must respond, maybe even work for us. Fear Song speaks to fear, personally. It’s edgy, contemporary and new. The spirits are gathered. We might as well dance.

4) We are tested. Once we lived in communities and in a way of thinking where neighborhood children were our own. We used to run freely between houses to visit and eat. Now children are killing each other and us. What have we come to? Hold Up is a wild response to this dilemma, something to see us through the chaos.

5) What if there’s nothing left in the cabinet to eat but a bag of commodity rice and corn syrup? You’ve lost your boyfriend, wife or lover. The boss tells you to forget coming in, the kids don’t have shoes or lunch money and the rent’s due. You crawl out to the ledge of the city you came to for salvation. The Woman Hanging From the Thirteenth Floor Window is your cry, your howl.

6) And then love. We all need love, so here’s a love song with This is My Heart.

7) Our beloved earth spins through the blue breath of atmosphere. Our breathing links us. Words are
born of this. Nizhoniigo is a Navajo word that expresses beauty and harmony breathing through us. It is wound through hip hop here, to protect all of those vulnerable ones walking through the world. This is the Reality Show. Put several billion people on a planet of fresh water, beautiful land with billions of animals, birds, insects, fish and other creatures. Give everyone enough to eat, enough light, dark, rain and sun. Wait a few million years. See what happens.

8) In our ongoing story we must stop and acknowledge the gift. We can’t do it alone. The eagle represents the highest level of thinking and being in this earth world. Eagle Song is a prayer to acknowledge the gift.

9) Morning Song is a haunting tune is to acknowledge the promise of dawning: of morning, of a new life in the womb of a mother, in the impending death of a beloved old man.

10) So in the end, after the sun goes down, we lay it all down. We lay it all down and dance. We no longer live in a world in which we listen to only Mvskoke Creek music, or rock and roll, or r&b, or gospel or Indian church music. We are living in a cross over world and we are crossing over. So, let’s dance with the Had-It-Up-To-Here Round Dance.

Laugh, cry, celebrate!

Joy Harjo

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