Updated: Sep 21, 2021
As promised here is a excerpt from Book Two. This will have great meaning to those who have read The Smoke of One Thousand Lodge Fires.
The few months we spent on the open prairie below the caprock were like a beautiful dream. The days seemed to glow under the dome of the springtime sun. The rains came, transforming the prairie into a wonderland of knee-deep buffalo grass and in places flowers as far as the eye could see. The People were happy, content and well fed. The trouble of a far-away army seemed to vanish within the blessed existence in which we were living. I was continually amazed at the warmth and love The People showed us. I also would never forget the desperation and near starvation we had survived… before finding our People here. I was a grateful man.
It was in this time our beautiful daughter came into the world. Nita whispered to me in the night within the shelter of our lodge “Today is the day Dak”. I cannot explain the calm that overcame me. I just seemed to know in my spirit that all would be well. Nita also carried that same confidence. We arose and went about our morning as usual. I exited the lodge to retrieve Kele and the other women. They were all there, standing outside our lodge. They also knew today, this morning in fact, was the day. The women gathered their birthing equipment, along with my wife Kwanita and began a purposeful walk across a prairie filled with flowers. As I stood and watched them depart, Tosahwi and One Horse approached my lodge. Tosahwi took my arm, indicating for me to follow.
We followed at a distance pausing a few hundred yards from the camp. The women had disappeared into a low valley filled with the fragrance of the fauna of a springtime prairie.
Tosahwi motioned for us to sit. He began his songs.
I joined in, singing softly. The songs were prayers really. This part of our culture was deeply spiritual. The expressions of the human soul…the acknowledgment of our creator…the thankfulness of His blessings. The songs contained the remembrance of all we had been given, along with the recalling of the Great Spirit’s wisdom, guidance, deliverance and love.
I was moved that day, moved in a way that I do not have words for. No words were needed. We sat together, three friends, in what I would forever refer to as, “The silence of song.”
Tosahwi finally spoke. His words were prophetic.
“Dak, the child within Kwanita’s womb will be a great leader. It has been revealed to me that she will deliver to The People a Homeland. It will be in a time and a place far away from here. Dak, I do not understand all that is to come. However, this day we will set the child apart. Her training and education will be vital.” I simply nodded.
As if on cue the women appeared over the little rise of land. They motioned us to come to them. We moved quickly, effortlessly over the prairie of flowers. Kwanita was resting on the buffalo robe. Upon her breast was my beautiful daughter.
Tears of joy spilled across my face. Those same joy-tears broke forth from Kwanita as our eyes met. Again, I had no words…and none were needed. This time it was the women who began the songs. Songs of celebration, songs of joy. We joined the worship, celebrating the hope and promise that only new life can bring. "Do you have a name for the child? "Tosahwi asked.
I gazed through the mist of my tears and observed the incredible scene before me. The pearl blue sky, the high mountains in the distance to the west, the buffalo moving as one to the north the prairie filled with flowers surrounding us.
"Her name will be Topusana." (Prairie Flower)