One Warrior's Prayer
Written by Adrian M. J. Archambeau, Sr.
Mato-Wanagi, Ghost Bear
I am Dakota Akicita, a warrior strong, proud, fierce, and free,
I have to be. . .
I am Dakota Sundancer, Pipe Carrier, humble, gentle, giving, understanding, loving, unselfish, forgiving and compassionate,
I need to be...
To the best of my environment I am balanced. Yet, it’s not easy in a world so lost, to commune in harmony and peace with our precious Mother Earth
(so wounded, so sick).
I am Akicita by choice;
I have to be . . .
My people still fight the old fight, the Wasicu Government that now rules this land who in selfishness and greed still seek to steal our last small piece of sacred ground, our most sanctified Paha Sapa (Black Hills) for it's contents of gold, where Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull, Red Cloud and Gall still live, pierce, dance and sing to this day.
As Akicita we still fight against the demons of racial and cultural ignorance and fear inadequate housing and education for our children and ourselves, our abused and battered wives, sisters, mothers and children, poor health care. Our drunk and addicted (drugs, alcohol and now gambling) brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, and children who seek desperately to find control in a world that has none.
Our children are finding refuge in gang mentality. Depression and suicide runs rampant while dysfunctional lifestyles have reached proportions of seeming normal as we fight for our right as a people to be free. These are the gifts this government has given us for not surrendering our spirits, our soul, our ties to the earth. We fight every day to hold onto our Chanupa Wakan, our sacred Pipe it's virtues, it's values, (our Ten Commandments) that our ways and our people would not die, the ways of Black Elk and Crow Dog.
Wambdi Hdeska (Spotted Eagle) Where are you? Soaring high above the clouds of smog and pollution, black clouds of disease and death. Can you still hear my cries, my prayers? Your unsica children are tired,
their hearts are sick, their minds diseased.
I am a Sundancer...
Help me Tunkasila, Wakan Tanka, God while I thirst, hunger and pray (fast), tears streaming, blood flowing, eagle bone whistle calling as I hang from your sacred tree (pitiful, humble, unworthy) that the burdens of your people, your children be placed on me so they may be free to walk your sacred earth in balance, peace, and harmony within your sacred circle.
I am a Pipe Carrier... Make me humble, gentle, giving, unselfish, compassionate, grateful, forgiving, loving and understanding that your children can see what you originally meant for us in this world of hatred and greed; that my eyes may reflect and reveal your love and tenderness, empathy and compassion.
I am a Man imperfect and flawed. I could sell my land, my pipe, and my ways, but what would that make me? Where would that leave me? I could then sit in the lap of luxury that my Wasicu fathers have promised through their lies, deceit and greed,
to become like them.
But, could I ignore the cries, the prayers?
The blood shed of my ancestors that beats in my chest, pumps through my veins, and pounds in my ears (our holy drum) that I might be free to walk this land and share these ways, to hug my children, comfort their sisters and mothers, assure them of their worth, value, need; to hold, strengthen and encourage their fathers, brothers, uncles,,, while I strive to the best of my capabilities to be a worthy guide, student, teacher, role model and father.
To some this would seem a job, too much responsibility to carry on one’s shoulders, a burden, an impossible dream. Yet, to me it is an honor, a gift passed down unconditionally from my ancestors, their life-giving blood that flows through my heart. They did not have to sacrifice, suffer and die to give me life, but lovingly they chose to just as I choose to carry on,
I have to...
To reveal they were both loving and loved, that their deaths ‘for me’ be not in vain, while their words, ways, prayers and dreams be not lost, be not dead. Ways not of money, factories, fancy cars and big houses of metal, concrete, paper, wood things originally of the earth but the ways of God, our Father, Grandfather, Creator who gave us this land, this earth, each other not to covet, abuse control and neglect, but to honor, respect, cherish, nurture and love. So if at times I should seem overwhelming, fierce, strong or pushy, or even weak or shaky in my ways forgive me and be patient. Take my hand and comfort me (my hurts, inadequacies, insecurities and fears) for I am but one man in a world too big.
I am Akicita by choice.
I have to be...
So as I sit outside our sacred sweatlodge (our church, sanctuary, mothers womb)and the smoke from my Chanupa gently curls, drifts and carries my prayers, my visions, my hopes, my dreams for all creation, for all mankind, on a soft, gentle, slow drifting breeze to the Creator, I remember my ancestors.
I will never forget, as I can never forget to thank you.
Hau Tunkasila, Wakan-Tanka, Pida-Maya
I am Akicita by choice;
I have to be...
MitkuyeOyasin.., All my Relations.
The Gardeners Of Earth
National Wildlife Humane Society
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