“You’ve got to always go back in time if you want to move forward.” – Snoop Dogg
“You have a turquoise iiʼ sizíinii“, Grandma Blackhorse says. She is looking deep into the campfire. The flames reflect in her aged eyes and make them look like they are glowing. “Don’t scare the boy”, Ms. Woods says. She is to my back; I can hear the sound of the dough, flipping back and forth slapping her hands. “He’s not scared “, Grandma says, opening her mouth to show a toothless smile, “he is soon to dream”. “Stop it mother, it is not their way”, Ms. Woods says, her voice lower, sounding concentrated. She is no doubt worried about the consistency of the fry bread and hoping it does not burn. “May be not their way”, Grandma, laughs, “but it is his way”. “It is his way”.
A lighter blue just before sunrise, still it is dark at 4:00 AM. Falling deep into a slumber, as the chants begin and end. Three-sixteenths a time a sliver, into a higher desert wind, high above this firmament, this journey, into your ways do I descend. Not of this world, but of this people, between four mountains that ascend. Night has fallen on the Black Yeii; let the light of holy boy begin again. Round and round the worlds bend.
So it is that I am dreaming, of the beginning and the end. Of a soul that learns from mercy, born for water in the San Juan’s
end. Star gaze I into the heavens of a universe where life begins, five billion light years of glory, while right here now I am ten again. Black, yellow, white rotates again, while the turquoise eats my sin.
A safer place has never happened, why oh why can it not be. That every grey hair on this planet should be a child with me. Spinning it would seem in a turquoise destiny. Seeing this stone ship, that which flew, with fires and ash from a deep cold blue. Now it brings me here, from time immortal, cast down by a dream so clear. Everything happens in time, a constant in movement by design. Forwards, backwards, jumping over rhymes. The answer to the riddle is those who seek will find. Floating in a dream three-sixteenths at a time. In a desert near, may be like a child the answer comes so clear. Never fear, be free, dream with me.
“Come boy, come here”. Grandma Blackhorse is motioning me over to her side of the fire, using her nose to beckon. I look to see if Ms. Woods is paying attention, but she is busy hustling pots and pans over to the house to clean. “Boy I said come here”, Grandma has raised her tone. I shuffle over to her, hesitant but not afraid for Grandma is smiling again. Grandma is holding out something in her hand, and as I reach her side, she motions for me to take it. I look for just a moment into her eyes, those eyes that have seen time, and perhaps traveled it too. When I look down, my hand is holding a piece of rough-hewn turquoise. “You have a turquoise iiʼ sizíinii”, Grandma Blackhorse says. -08.27.21- דָנִיֵּאל
Authors Note: Grandma Blackhorse’s piece of Turquoise resides with this author’s soul and rock collection, as it will until the stars fall from the sky and I fly the Shiprock home.