The sound of metal scraping across
rock strewn fields is not the imagination
filling time with stories and distracting
thoughts away from what appears to be inevitable.

No, that really is the machines
emerging from the dense forest.

That is the machines rewiring fluid thoughts,
adapting to the immediate environment
while focusing on the assigned task
while the human elements head toward the sea.

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In the beginning we come into this space
as innocent beings fumbling around
the empty fields stretching forever.

We stare in wonder and with amazement
as to the endless possibilities
and the control we have of our life.

Then something changes and the field
begins to fill with objects and obstacles
and where there was no path, forks in the road.

How we navigate this field and
how far reaching our sphere of influence
determines the lanterns brightness when we return.

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Copyright (c) 2014-2016 Twisted Root Photography

In the end, when this life becomes the next,
we become the raw materials returned to earth
only to rise and become the flowers of tomorrow.

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Copyright (c) 2014-2016 Twisted Root Photography

In the end, when this life becomes the next,
we are left behind as one flower in the open fields
becoming 10-thousand blooming and radiant beings.

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Copyright (c) 2014-2016 Twisted Root Photography

“No words”, as the sky burns
and we watch from another place.

“No words”, as I remember a time
before time standing atop mountains
overlooking valleys filled with
smoke and spirits of ten thousand beings.

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“For the Lakota, kinship with all creatures of the earth, sky and water was a real and active principle. In the animal and bird world there existed a brotherly feeling that kept the Lakota safe among them. And so close did some of the Lakotas come to their feathered and furred friends that in true brotherhood they spoke a common tongue.

The animals had rights — the right of man’s protection, the right to live, the right to multiply, the right to freedom, and the right to man’s indebtedness — and in recognition of these rights the Lakota never enslaved an animal and spared all life that was not needed for food and clothing. For the animal and bird world there existed a brotherly feeling that kept the Lakota safe among them.

This concept of life and its relations was humanizing and gave to the Lakota an abiding love. It filled his being with the joy and mystery of living; it gave him reverence for all life; it made a place for all things in the scheme of existence with equal importance to all.

From Wakan Tanka, the Great Spirit, there came a great unifying life force that flowed in and through all things — the flowers of the plains, blowing winds, rocks, trees, birds, animals — and was the same force that had been breathed into the first man. Thus all things were kindred, and were brought together by the same Great Mystery.”

~ Luther Standing Bear
(Ota Kte, Mochunozhin)
(1868-1939) Lakota chief