A Death in the Family


Interlude - (Wicapi-wakan) Witashnah

She stood looking out across the water and pulled her shawl tighter against the evening chill. It was almost time. Very soon she would walk to the foot of the mountain and perform the sacrifice as her mother's mother's mother had done.

She raised her face to the evening sun and felt its warmth on her cheek. It was soft, gentle-- almost like a kiss. She sighed, content with what must be.

The others did not understand-- even she did not fully understand, but she knew it wasn't as barbaric as the outsiders made it out to be. They were so offended the president of the UCAS had requested a summit meeting-- quiet literally in this instance since it was to be held at the foot of the mountain.

They would talk. They always talked, they never listened– and that was why they did not understand. They only understood the sound of their own voices– perhaps that was why she had no voice.

She was sure they would not understand-- but perhaps-- when it was over, the land would be whole and having seen-- they might understand.

She feared they would ever understand-- those without the gift never did see. They could not see how the land suffered-- how the sickness crept into the land. Pollution, poisons, toxic chemicals-- they were killing the land and its people. All people, not just hers.

She knew the legends-- knew the words that had been passed down from generation to generation-- but all the old woman could tell her was that when the time came-- she would know what to do.

She closed her eyes and breathed in the evening air. Even up here she could sense it-- the wrongness. It was almost time-- and not a moment too soon.

The other was near.

Copyright 2001 - M.T. Decker

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