Monday Monday

This new technology is amazing and/or a distraction. Skipped paddling yesterday morning because I trashed my back and bicep muscles at the gym the day before, and pulled a muscle while helping another crew pull the canoe up. I'll be out again late this afternoon. Lonely for the water.

I upgraded to iLife 3 and decided to experiment with a new website that I could easily add videos, podcasts and images to--(or so I thought, I recorded a little sax bit and some voice and still haven't been successful in getting it to play--any ideas?). That site is:


I am taking a podcast class later this week and will begin to regularly podcast. Will keep you advised.

My current site at the www.joyharjo.com address has a promised unveiling this next week. Stay tuned.

And mvtos, mahalos, thanks, gracias forever and ever for Karen Strom for faithfully maintaining this one.


The Stink-Eye Olympics and Podcasting

Friday and a rainy morning in Honolulu. Sticky. Wednesday was rainy but I headed out to Moanalua Bay to paddle anyway. The shore was croweded with paddlers though the clouds were heavy with rain. We had enough for two double-hull canoes. We went out for an hour, up to Top Island though we always prefer the ocean. The rain held back. And the sunset revealed eternity.

Last Sunday morning when we were paddling our canoe was consistently beating our coach’s canoe. She stood up dramatically in her canoe after we'd stopped at the midway goal and gave us stink-eye. You know the look. It's that slanted tight cut-eye look that is absolutely directed and means you’d-better-listen-or-stop-what-you’re-doing or the, you’re-going-to-die-or-wish-you-had look. That look is called “stink eye” here in Hawaii. She didn't want our canoe beating her boat. She would have an excellent chance at the Stink-Eye Olympics.

Subscribers: Please note, my website is under construction and the subscription list was disabled. It will be or corrected by February 1st, if not before. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Also note, I'm exploring podcasting and expect to add it as a feature. Any suggestions for programs are welcome. mekkopoet@earthlink.net. Another note: I have my mail set on high spam. You might get an email back saying your email is in the holding tank. I check them all out and let those into my mailbox that aren't trying to sell me cheap mortgages, penis enlargers or get me to give them my bank account number so they can deposit millions in my bank account from Nigeria.

Have a good one.


A Winter Wednesday Morning in Honolulu

It's a rainy Wednesday morning here in Honolulu. I'm still fresh from dreams, and fresh into this one called "Wednesday morning in Honolulu in the time of corrupt warring governments". Hurray for Harry Belefonte. He told the truth. "The President is a liar." And to see it told in the muck of innuendo brings a shine, let's some light in.

I've begun to think that this life is a dream. Not dream in the Disney-sense of "everything's going to turn out alright-you'll find a Prince or Princess and live happily ever after". That "dream" has ruined many lives. No, not that. Rather a complex, ironic, paradoxical, mythic, dynamic and rich dreaming. This earthly dreaming is the teaching and learning field. When you start to look real close it's moving energy. The other side is just right here. Where we've been and where we're going is right here. Everything matters. Every thought is creative.


(The following copied from Indigenous News Network. If the creator of this is out there, please advise.)
You Maybe a Techno-Indian if:

You have several CPU's up on blocks in your living room.

There is a satellite dish for high speed wireless on your Hud House
(insert Hogan, trailer, apt, etc)

Your wife doesn't want to hear that lame old "my server was down" excuse

That “hope my system doesn’t crash” song is always in your head

You think a floppy disk slot crammed with tobacco and flat cedar will
somehow increase your connection speed.

At least 2 giga-bytes of pow-wow, flute, Joy Harjo, hand game,
traditional, Indigenous, Ulali music, etc are in your mp3 files

You send aaaayyyyyymail.

Three Words: pirated native Jpegs

Your mail address is DancesWithModems@hotmail.com.

AOl will no longer cash your per-cap checks.

Googling Fry Bread Recipes or Tribes is a usual event

Before you attend a powwow, you need to check its website first.

Your mouse is coated with frybread grease.

Had a petition to get your council to install wireless nodes around the

You ask chicks for their email address at gatherings.

If you are on dial and up use the connect time to braid your hair every

Your password is something about your tribe or something in your

Trying to create a laser pointer to use with your power point that you
control with your lips (or chin depending on where you are from)

You have a beaded zip drive.

Bookmarks include ICT, Tribal Website, or an online bead store

Head to mapquest before the next tournament

You know what .nsn means

You know a hard drive isn't just the road home from the 49!

SPAM list includes annoying pseudo-Indian “trading post’s”

Knowing that smudging your disk drive may help

Any of the following dangling from or resting on your monitor: Feather,
beads, pictures of brown people, url for a site that can help you find a
native date, fetish, special token, dried meat or fish -



"Empire's War on Extremism: Indigenous Peoples Write Back"
Guest Editors: Larry W. Emerson and D. Anthony Tyeeme Clark

Ongoing attacks by academics, journalists, and politicians on the political sovereignty and cultural autonomy of Indigenous Peoples highlight a disturbing anti-Indigenous racist trend disguised as public debate. Through what amounts to unchecked media access, writers around the globe use their privileged positions to promote western bias and dogma, deepen colonial trauma, and undermine futures of Indigenous Peoples. For instance, assertions by University of Auckland lecturer Elizabeth Rata that Kaupapa Maori "is a strategy of intellectual legitimatisation that promotes ethnic primordialism and culturalism determinism" and "weaken[s] the conditions essential for democracy" have currency in the climate created by the Bush administration's "war on extremism." Rata's rhetoric bears a resemblance to global right wing conservative messages that promote the notion that when "traditional fundamentalists" succeed in intervening into western power structures they contaminate and weaken western democracy.

The empire's war on extremism has engaged Marxists, African American and Latina/o critical theorists, feminists, and gay, lesbian, and queer writers. More recently, it has turned its predictable gaze on Indigenous peoples who not only support other oppressed groups but are also concerned with self-governance, cultural autonomy, ecologically-based kinship systems, and decolonization.

Indigenous sovereignty and self-determination embraces a non-western history, language, and worldview that express unique legal and spiritual ties to land, place, and community. These elements shape Indigenous political aspirations and method and often contradict modern and western ideology. Critical differences in Indigenous worldview emerge. The empire, therefore, approaches its global war on Indigenous Peoples in unique ways.

The Journal of Indigenous Nations Studies welcomes submissions that engage the empire's distinctive assaults on Indigenous peoples. We invite researchers and practitioners to share their findings and experiences to help shape a future INDIGENOUS research agenda that evolves critical theory and perspective. We welcome commentary, review essays, and research-based manuscripts.

Manuscripts may take issue with academics, politicians, journalists, and others who use their privileged access to educational resources, policy-making apparatuses, and mass media to undermine efforts to indigenize or decolonize scholarship, law, and culture. Manuscripts may also critique Natives who participate as empire's co-conspirators. Anti-Indigenism's long history veils issues of class, gender, economic privilege, power, and colonialism, blinding both settler and Native alike. Contemporary tribal government and organizational models, for example, risk reproducing unhealthy, dysfunctional, and colonialized relationships that may eventually destroy generations, cause various forms of exile, and create unhealthy

As We Smoked Prayers On the Stairs

Every damned thing matters
As does everything that’s blessed.
All our ancestors are in the gut together.
Something larger than this whole island
Is breathing. Tradewinds fly past this house
Stirring up ginger and plumeria.
The music’s about to start down
By the water, and young herds
Intoxicated with longing as they apply lipstick
Or aftershave for the evening, shine.
I can hear some teetering feedback, and
The “check one, check two”.
I was there once: the baby in the mirror
Or the last one down at closing time.
Tonight I’m so far from where I’ve been
I don’t know where I’m going.
So urgent, new and slick we were, every one of us
As we emerged from
The fierce and crazy story.

c Joy Harjo 1/06 Honolulu


Dreaming and Deconstruction

January 11, 2006 Honolulu

I imagine that I am dreaming after I wake up and pull on my earthly skin. I pull it up over bumps. I am in reconstruction. I've had to re-remember and remind myself that my manner of construction of art comes directly from dreaming, from within dreamtime. That’s how my poems came, my songs, how they are born and come forth. Those years at UCLA and teaching in that kind of atmosphere did not value dreaming, though none of the academic constructions would exist without dreaming. The buildings wouldn’t exist without dreaming, nor would the humans who work there, nor would the various programs exist without dreaming and intuition. Reason and logic is a very small part of it, but necessary, like a ruler, compass and protractor are necessary when constructing buildings. I am being forced to strip myself of false notions of art and the purpose of art, of how art is born, where it comes from, its path and have to reconsider my attachment to certain ideas about the process.

i've had to deconstruct to remember myself again. (A different take on that term!)


Cellular entities and wildfires

Dreaming: "I am present at the cellular level. It is crystal with colors. Maroon is one of them. I pick up one piece and move it to another place. The cells (cellular entitites) react with flares of angry colors. Though this world is one mind, one soul there are still attractions and repulsions. When I pick up the piece and move it elsewhere there was acceptance. The others welcomed it."

Talked with my cousin in Glenpool yesterday. They need rain at home. There are wildfires and lingering smoke. He said that as far as he knows there are no more rainmakers among our people. Could be. Knows how they used to do it, and told me, but doesn’t know the songs. He had to cut the call short because of difficulty of breathing through the smoke.

We need songs in these times. Some of the old, classic and powerful ones left us because we did not or could not carry them, or they would not fit through or within a particular time or place—sort of like the dream episode above. We are going to need them in these upcoming days and years. We need to remember who we are and how we are utterly connected to this earth and sky.

This is the spirit world.


We Are In the Spirit World

This morning I received a post of a prediction. It's startling, sad and a hellish vision, but it's nothing I haven't heard before from visionaries from our tribal nations. I've heard these similar predictions from tribal people all over the world and others who still remember what it means to be human.

Many of us walk through the days heavy with grief. The drug companies who have incorporated not for healing but for money tell us they can make us happy. Just take a pill or two every day and we will be happy. Or we have a drink or a sniff or a smoke of something to forget. We have forgotten that this is the spirit world, that everything we think and do matters. We have forgotten that we are a part of this earth, we have forgotten that we are integral to the working of a system that runs with acknowledgement, gratitude and service to others. Those aren't "sexy" terms these days, they never have been, especially in these recent years in this society developed to sell things. We have forgotten who we really are, that each of us carries gifts to be brought and developed, no matter who we are--each utterly matters.

The shine has to come from within. You can dress up a piece of plastic and give it a name and a high price and people will hunger, desire to own it.

I heard my tribesman Phillip Deere speak years ago as we all thought about who we are and who we were becoming. We would have been shocked to think then that we would be buying water out of bottles. He said many of these same things spoken by Mr. Has-No-Horses because he, painfully, saw them and wanted us to remember that we are spiritual human beings with a reason for the path here in this place. The question we need to ask is what condition is our spiritual? Spiritual is the above-the-ground forces and elements, the below-the-ground, the where-we-are-walking, the inside-of-us, the outstide-of-us, the all-around-us. We just have to look at the condition of our body: this earth. And we have to come together.

It's a terrible joke about all the infighting we have in our tribes. We can't even speak with one heart in our tribal nations. It's the same everywhere, Oklahoma, California or Hawaii. This is where our power resides, to survive or continue through compassion for each other. Maybe we've grown addicted to fighting, to jealousy. We've forgotten how to act.

This morning I will remember to walk more carefully, think more carefully and address this earth I walk on, tenderly; address the skies, tenderly; address my human, bird, animal, plant, and mineral neighbors, tenderly; address you, tenderly, and myself, tenderly.

from the transcript of the Regular October Session
(October 4, 2005)
of the
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council Proceedings at
Eagle Butte, South

OCTOBER 17, 2005

"ROBERT WALTERS: Mr. Chairman, thank you and
Council, with us is Sidney Has-No-Horses. He is a
medicine man from Oglala and Mr. Chariman, he has a
message that he's going to all the tribes, all the
reservations with that came out of a ceremony and I
feel it's a good message. I visited Mr.Has-No-Horses
and so at this time, I'd like to get the floor for


"Mitakuye Oyasin. All my relatives.

"I'd like to get in the middle if I could, I
really don't like to use the mic.

"My name is Sidney Has-No-Horses. I'm from the
Pine Ridge Reservation. You probably know my father,
his name was Dawson Has-No-Horses. He was a yuwipi
man, a powerful medicine man. My grandfather's name is
Frank Fools Crow. He was also a powerful medicine man.

"Six months ago, we had a ceremony, in this
ceremony, two angels came to me and they talked to me
and they told us of the devastation that would happen
to the islands and the Indian Ocean.

"They told us of the earthquakes that would hit

"They told us of the earthquakes that will hit
South American and they also told us of the Tsunami
that wiped out all the people and they told us of the
hurricanes that came to Florida, the one that came to
New Orleans and the one that went to Texas. There's
one more hurricane coming to wipe out another city.
Two weeks ago, we had a ceremony, Sitting Bull came in
and he talked to me; Crazy Horse, he talked to me;
Chief Big Foot talked to me and they asked me to go to
the Seven Council Fires and to the
Council People and to warn all of these Fires, within
six months. There's going to be a tidal wave that's
going to wipe out Los Angeles. Within six months,
there's going to be an eruption in the northwest with
the volcanoes.

"Two eruptions within six months. They say from the
eruptions of these volcanoes, the ash is coming, the
Missouri River will be destroyed.
They say the water that we drink from the ground is
going to be no longer drinkable.
These hardships are coming because Gold is bringing
this. Whether you believe in Christianity, Native
American Church or the traditional way, if you read
the Bible, we are going into the fourth seal. There's
diseasescoming that are going to wipe out our children
and like this man said here, meth -mehaphetamine on
our rez is very bad too. If we don't stop that,
it's going to destroy the next generation. Many
vegetables are going to be born into our tribes. When
I'm done here, I am going to Standing Rock
[Reservation] and I am going to stand in front of
them, their council and tell them the same thing I am
telling you now. This winter is going to be very cold
for a long time. Ranchers are going to lose their
horses and
cows because it is not going to warm up. The price of
propane is going to skyrocket and sometimes they are
not going to be able to deliver the propane to our
families. This food issue in the Bible, it says one
day there will be no food in the store's shelves. If
you look at the hurricane, a lot of the stores, < BR>there's no food on the shelves.

"These people lost their homes. They can't drink the
water and so I come because of the mighty chiefs that
talked to me and because of who I am. They tell me, I
need to warn the tribes.

"Today, I came here without announcement, but to see
you all gathered like this, I know God is on my side
to see you gathered. The Sisseton-Wahpeton tomorrow
will be gathered at 10 o'clock and they will hear what
I have to say. The Flandreau people are going to be
waiting for me tomorrow evening. I 'm going up to Fort
Yates here, I'm going to talk to them even if it's
after hours and so I thank you very much for letting
me come in and I'm thankful that I got all of you
together at the same time. I offer you all a
handshake. My name is Sidney Has-No-Horses. I'm from
Batesland, South Dakota. You might want to write this
down. My phone number is (removed). We incorporated
ourselves through the State of South Dakota to let you
know that we are serious. Within six months, we are
going to be
living in hell of a world and these chiefs have talked
to me, and my cousins. If you ever want a ceremony,
you get ahold of us and we will bring you a ceremony
to let you believe. But the chiefs tell me, some of
have good hearts. Some of you have good mind. Some of
you have spirituality. You are the people that will
take heed on the words I bring and there's a lot of
people that didn't believe us when everything we told
them has happened and my President, Cecilia Fire
Thunder, I talked to her yesterday and she supports me
because everything I told her would happen to our
tribe has happened. The power of God, he knows what
he's bringing to us and in three years, as the keepers
of Mother Earth, if the Seven Fires do not come
together, there's going to be a meteorite that will be
coming and it's going to hit off of San Francisco and
they told us that the Seven Council Fires, these Seven
Fires never has hate and jealousy toward each other.
I've been trying to get the medicine men of Oglala to
be in unity, but they can't and now Gold asked me to
come and get all the Tribal Councils together and
all the tribes together.

"That's a very hard job that he's giving me. I'm very
nervous as I stand here in front of you, but I tried
to look you all in the eye to let you know that I'm
for real and so at this time, there are food for
things you can think about in the next six month and
this little time you have given me. I thank you. Now
I'm going to Standing Rock. I will be going to every

"Maybe the tribal members will get together and at
least the tribal presidents will have a ceremony for
all you to hear and believe in God.

"All my relatives. Mitakuye Oyasin."


[Cheyenne River Reservation
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council
Gregg Bouland, Chairperson
P.O. Box 590
Eagle Butte, SD 57625]

Beatrice Medicine, PhD.
Hinsha Waste Agli Win
Returns Victorious With A Red Horse Woman

Dr. Medicine was committed to teaching

By Jo Hall
Wednesday, December 28, 2005 1:32 PM CST

The Mobridge area and the world lost a remarkable
woman, a dedicated teacher and one committed to
fighting for the rights of minorities and those
oppressed when Beatrice Medicine, PhD., 82, died
Monday, Dec. 19, 2005, during emergency surgery at
Medcenter One Hospital in Bismarck, N.D. Her native
name was Hinsha Waste Agli Win, which translates to
Returns Victorious With A Red Horse Woman.

She was born in Wakpala on the Standing Rock
Reservation on Aug. 1, 1923, to Martin Medicine Jr.
and Anna Grace (Gabe) Medicine. She attended the
Wakpala Public School and after graduation enrolled at
South Dakota State University in Brookings, earning a
baccalaureate degree in 1945. Further study in her
chosen field of anthropology followed at the
University of New Mexico, Michigan State University
and the University of Washington. She earned an MA
degree at Michigan State in 1954, and completed her
doctorate in 1983 at the university of Wisconsin while
teaching there.

Her lifelong commitment to the instruction of others
began shortly after her graduation from SDSU, when she
was hired as an instructor at Haskell Indian Institute
in Lawrence, Kan. Subsequent teaching positions
included Santo Domingo Pueblo (N.M.) Agency School,
Flandreau (S.D.) Indian School, the University of
British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia and
Mount Royal College, Calgary, Alberta, both in Canada,
the University of Montana, the University of South
Dakota, San Francisco State University, the University
of Washington, Dartmouth College, Colorado College,
Stanford University, and California State University
at Northridge, among others. She was also frequently
asked to be a visiting scholar at universities and
research institutions across the United States and

In addition to her teaching role, Dr. Medicine was
active in civic matters that affect the rights of
children, women, ethnic minorities, especially
American Indians (or as they are known in Canada,
Native or First Nations) and gay/lesbian and
trans-gendered individuals.

She served as head of the Women's Branch of the Royal
Commission on Aboriginal Peoples for the Canadian
government, helping to draft legislation to further
protect the legal rights of Native families there.

She was actively involved in establishing American
Indian Centers in Seattle, Vancouver and Calgary, and
served as a consultant and adviser to numerous cities
and other governmental entities on social issues, as
well as public and private foundations nationwide. She
served as an expert witness in several trials
pertaining to the rights of American Indians,
including the 1974 federal case brought against the
individuals involved in the Wounded Knee take-over of

Issues of indigenous peoples across the world were of
great interest to her, and she combined presenting
American Indian ideas and concepts with learning about
other cultures, traveling to lecture and present her
research papers in Germany, Peru, Australia, New
Zealand, Yugoslavia, Portugal, the Netherlands,
Russia, Botswana, Italy, Switzerland, Lithuania and
Great Britain.

A chance encounter on one of these trips led her to
return and create a documentary video, juxtaposing
footage of Russian hobbyists that reenact idealized
Plains Indian culture and dance with the reactions to
this shown by Lakota residents of her home community
on Standing Rock Reservation. This video had been
shown widely across the United States and Canada to
great acclaim and interest.

Dr. Medicine has received many awards including
several honorary doctorates and distinguished alumna
awards, numerous fellowships and citations, the Ohana
Award from the American Counseling Association, the
Outstanding Woman of Color Award from the National
Institute of Women of Color, an Honoring Our Allies
Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force,
and the Bronislaw Malinowski Award for Lifetime
Achievement from the Society for Applied Anthropology.

Within the last month, she was awarded the George and
Louise Spindler award for Education in Anthropology
from the American Anthropology Association. Another
less formal award of which she was perhaps more proud,
was having been the Sacred Pipe Woman at the Sun Dance
at Sitting Bull's Camp in 1977.

She was the author of two books on indigenous women
and more than 100 articles on various subjects
including bilingual education, gender studies, native
education, alcoholism and sobriety studies, art, and
ethno-history. The University of Illinois Press
published a collection of her writings entitled
"Learning to be an Anthropologist and Remaining
Native" in 2001, and Altemira Press was working with
her on an upcoming publication at the time of her

Her ongoing commitment to education and community is
shown by her work to help ensure construction of a new
public school for the Wakpala community upon her
return there after her teaching career.

At Dr. Medicine's request, there will be no services,
and the family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations
be made in her name to the American Indian College
Fund, 8333 Greenwood Boulevard, Denver, Colo. 80221.

I met Bea in the mid-seventies at one of the first conferences for native women writers held in Tsaile, Arizona near Canyon de Chelly at what was then called the Navajo Community College. Roberta Hill, Nia Francisco, Leslie Silko, Ramona Wilson, Beatrice and I were some of the participants gathered there to share our writings and to speak about the process. Her bearing was always dignified, even elegant. She spoke the truth even if it cut and she knew how to laugh and create a smart and healing laughter. I included one of her stories “Searching for the Bishop” in Reinventing the Enemy’s Language, Contemporary Native American Women’s Writings of North America, W.W. Norton, NY,1997. It remains one of my favorites as it employs quintessential native humor and wit. I was in awe of her and I still am.

May you continue to travel beautifully.