Thursday, August 24, 2006

Mikweed and Monarchs (I am)


I am from red dirt - sticky clay that painted my world and everything it touched with a wash of color.

I am from the land of cotton to the east, the fire and brimstone of baptist preachers and ordinary folks who worked the land. I am from a lost generation of first Americans that bargained their ancient ways for something safe. I am from that seed of hope that floated west with those sons and daughters for a better life. I am the first generation born from that hope and I return back to this land to honor my ancestors and their dreams.

I am from endless summer days of warm mysterious lake waters, murky depths, mysterious fish. I am from the son of sons of water lovers - born from rivers with magical names that still feed my imagination on a hot summers day. I am out of breath from swimming. I am nut brown and freckled from head to toe. I am from a grandfather who taught me how to respect the gift of fish I received from the hidden depths of those magic waters.

I am from a playground full of ancient riddles: arrowheads, flint, potshards. I am from a place where the ancestors knew much more than we may ever know. I am from the wind that whispered those secrets to me across the plains.

I am from a land of box turtles, horned toads and collared lizards -- now nothing more than memories and ghosts from an enchanted time and place. I am from the nut brown, tow headed little boy trying desperately to protect them from a fate they could not understand. I have worn their colored ribbon on my heart long before it was fashionable.

I am from the field of dreams that grew behind our home. I am from milkweed and monarch butterflies. I am from the mulberries, pecans and acorns that sustained my animal kingdom. I am from the tapestry of wild flowers that grew in that field. I am the flower in that garden that refused to grow in that red, sticky clay.

I am the seed from that flower aloft on a current of discovery - flown round the world on that famous wind who finally understands that the greatest journeys are the ones that bring us home. I want to take root in that red dirt and flower again.

I am from Oklahoma. Red dirt runs like a river through my dreams.
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