We sat and listened to a man talk about the history of the major Native American tribes (including how some were matriarchal) and play a beautiful song on the flute, and then a group of Native Americans taught us about the different types of dance, and demonstrated... the music went straight to my blood and filled me up... ohhh I love drums. (and I learned that I prefer the deeper, southern style of singing rather than the higher northern style)
little boy drummer -- he kept quite a good rhythm! And the adults treated him with as much respect as they did each other -- they didn't condescend, but took him seriously ♥
this guy took it very seriously; you could easily see it was of high importance to him
you could see the story he told with his dance
this guy danced so wildly and fast that I had a very hard time photographing him as more than a blur of color
this guy was very shy but so expressive in his dance and attire
Afterward, I sat on the edge of the 'borrow pit' and gazed at the massive tree growing from the bed of it -- how old the pit must be to have such an Elder growing there! -- and my partner spoke with the flute player. My partner's part Seminole but has never really explored his heritage -- I was so thrilled that he spoke so openly about it, and thrilled that he wanted to buy the CD of flute music. It's such a huge step in openness -- I can't even express how amazed I am, how happy. I've felt like he had this amazing present, but he never even took the wrapping off -- and I would have opened it as soon as my baby hands could manage it, and worn it like a crown ever after. Even though it's not something I can share, I know it's such a big part of who he is, and I am so excited that he is finally opening up to it. I think this was a exuviating experience for him -- no, I know it. He's letting me post photos of him without him having to approve them first!
Then we walked to the largest mound, and up the many shallow steps... and I lost my breath, partly because I'm out of shape and partly because I was overwhelmed by the spirit of the place. I was immediately drawn to a massive tree on the side of the mound, my God/dess, it was so amazing -- I have tears in my eyes at the memory. I sat near and spoke quietly to it as my partner walked away around the edge of the mound, and just drank in its presence... when my partner came back I said that I wished I could touch it, and so he insisted on helping me down to it (I have a fear of heights and not much faith in my own balance). When I touched its bark, I felt such a strong rush of warmth! I've had only one experience even remotely like it, and that was 8 years ago... this was such a profoundly spiritual experience; I feel like it confirms my connection with trees. I can't put it into words, it was so amazing -- in that one second, everything shifted. I feel like everything I believe became more real, more alive. (and I realized that I've never met a tree as old as that one -- all the trees I have met have been young) My partner took some photos of the moment (which I am so grateful for), and then helped me back up to the top.
We wandered around and I saw several more amazing trees (including one with a faery house!), but none like that one. I feel like I left a little piece of my heart with it, and I can feel the tug of that connection. ♥ How can life be so amazing? (God/dess, I love you, thank you for this life, thank you for the beauty and the love you put in everything ♥ ♥ ♥) And there was a river nearby! Such an amazing, incredible, fascinating place -- I felt honored to walk the ground there. I definitely must go back (and next time I must wear sunscreen).
meeting the Elder
I'm so small
(I love how you can see my silver hairs)
under a willow
another amazing tree on the edge of the mound
feeling the earth
when I was laying under the tree
♥ ♥ ♥
this is the tree I was laying under, as viewed from the bottom of the mound
my partner -- comfortable!
my partner stares
I love this one ♥
wild at heart
I LOVE the light shining through that leaf
and that night my partner and I had the most amazing, beautifully connected sexperience we've ever had... It was incredible. I feel like we both opened up to each other in a way we never have before. ♥