here are some lies i’ve told you today:

  1. i’m fine
  2. it’s ok


you don’t understand what I mean when I say

“but they’re my kin”

maybe it’s because you grew up kicking anthills

you were brought up with generations

that don’t know what it feels like

to run your hands over stretched hide

but they’re my kin

you’re probably confused.

i don’t know if you’ve felt what it’s like

to mourn a stranger

but these strangers aren’t so distant

from faces we recognize

when we go home.

i’m fine

it’s ok

you laugh when i say i can smell the seasons change

but then we wake up to frosty mornings caught in low sunlight

the birds know it will snow soon.

the leaves are starting to point down.

autumn brings grief and the end of huckleberries,

it brings longer nights and brighter moons.

the northern lights are stairways to a final home

and they’ve been dancing a long dance

making room in constellations for souls to rest

there’s a particular heartache you feel

maybe you don’t feel it

but there’s a particular heartache we feel

when the river is being dragged

when backroads are being searched

when footprints disappear in snow

it’s ok

i’m fine



44 thoughts on “wanisinowin

        1. No that’s not why, Hemangini. Guilt and sin are your projections. Those come from an institutionalized dogma and not a sincere place. As is the word “bad” and actually, you need to rethink what is about you and what is not about you.
          “I’m fine” might be a mask you find hides guilt or shame but it is because you hold those pre-conceived notions that you still can not see or hear this persons experience.
          I don’t respond out of guilt or act out of guilt. I don’t believe in “sin” so what do you mean… really Hemangini? What are you really saying to this person about their work and being as if you know them?

  1. Wow! We all are fine on the outside, it is the way we protect our broken hearts from further harm. It’s fine, I am O.K. I glad the Metis’ are finally recognized as a nation and are a true example of two worlds collided by their art, t reflects this. I am touched.

  2. I can relate to someone who feels two worlds inside themselves, as I do, as my father did, as the elders all did. It always relates to a closeness, back with nature, where we started from.

  3. “the northern lights are stairways to a final home
    and they’ve been dancing a long dance
    making room in constellations for souls to rest”

    This is an exquisite poem. I was born in Alaska and feel there is great significance in the Northern lights. But you are right. Most of us don’t understand. Unless we’re taught. Thank you for sharing this in a simple yet powerful way.

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