Good Morning

John Mahkewa

I woke up this morning, from a dream in which we were herding cattle though the desert scrub bush of, stub mesquite, cactus and cow shit along the trail… One of the most important craft I was taught by my Sayah,(grandma) Grace Chapella and my auntie Alma was the, Life Breathe Way. I’m using the, Way, as they would have said, his is how we do it. Do it like this. So I was just taught to follow what they taught, in fact lived and practiced.

In the summers I spent with my Sayah Grace, “Out Home”, actually, Polacca, Ariz. on the Hopi Rez. I was a little boy. She’d wake me up very early in the morning and left all the others, family to sleep. I could smell the coffee, even in the summer the mornings got cold…so I could feel that too.

It would still be dark outside, seemed to be deep purple sky to the distant eastern horizon a sliver of bright Amber births the night into day. Sayah, would be standing on my left side. “When the Sun comes out we’ll take our life breathe for the day”. She would get me ready for it to. I’d be facing East, She’d take my hand, with my eyes closed, She’d, one the day you were born you and all of us, that breathe came from Tawa, (I call My Source). Your first cry was you breathing in all this life. Our way is to celebrate this life. And the many times we did this it was last me the same words over and over. But with each time I could feel a or her deeper connection she was trying, and sure hoping, I’d keep. Oh the other words she would say, “Never forget we came from the East”

We’d be standing outside barefoot, well I’d be, she later taught me about grounding her ways was to see, yourself like a tree and push your roots deep into the ground. The deeper the better. When it becomes, clear and quite, that is deep enough. Then smell the air from that place. We’d be standing like soldiers, taking in the first deep into our big Bear chest, the clean scented cedar and crispness of energy, this was for Tawa, in this case, Sun. Another breath for family, village, friends…gratitude for the Path we all share. The last breath was for you… for rain to farm’ll need a lot of rain. Be who you are, never quit. Your Bear, never forget.

Now began to breathe in the air from that place when you do that mix it with the air of the morning, both good for your body. It is right now who’ll you’ll ever be to be Present with the day. We be out there smiling and happy that it was good smelling all that and going places in our mind with our eyes closed listening to dogs barking, chickens…day coming alive well in my mind, it is now magically being created in the movies, only mine have taste and smell.

We’d end that time bowing to the sun, going inside and having breakfast, with coffee and talk about what we saw, you know it all our senses..

Sweet love.

"My brother and I have been coming to their camps since we were little. They have all been great, we never know what to expect, each one is always better than the one before."
—Kobe age 15
"Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better."
—Albert Einstein
"Nature is a profoundly deep part of us. Our species has spent 99.9% of the past 200,000 years thriving in nature, building shelter, making clothing, making fire, finding drinking water, tracking and harvesting food. For our species survival we had to be deeply connected to nature."
—Brian King