as Queenie Shambala came full steam thru the door of the ultra sound lab she caught a glimpse of Natalynn Winningway on the ultrasound table

the tech was moving the ultrasound wand slowly over her swollen abdomen

Natalynn looked calm and seemingly out of touch with the procedure
it was something she'd had to do so often during a pregnancy and she was mostly detached from the results

in fact Natalynn had to have many more tests and procedures then most pregnant women on the Rez

Natalynn and women like her were the reason Queenie was doctoring here
she had applied and reapplied for 3 years for a post on this particular Rez Natalynn and her husband Joseph and their families were part of a multi-gene cleaning experiment created by the government
thru the discoveries made in genetic engineering medical science was trying to find ways to eliminate all gene linked diseases which so ravaged all Native American tribes

oh that sounded so altruistic didn't it

no more babies with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome because the native women wouldn't be drinking out on the edge of the Rez by the time they where 12

"what's up" Queenie asked

the tech stared up at Queenie with a perplexed look

"i can't find it now" she said Natalynn lifted out of her revelry and turned her head toward the screen and as per usual this early in the pregnancy she couldn't make head or tail of it, Queenie noticed and said "another perfectly normal pregnancy Natalynn you can get dressed now"

a slightly embarrassed look crossed the tech's face she turned to Queenie who motioned her to stop the scan and waited for Natalynn to leave the room "what did you see" she asked the tech "i'm not sure" as she brought up the video playback "see right there" the babys back flipped into sight and a slight almost imperceptable shadow raised from the scapular areas on both sides she backed up the video and reran the event Queenie looked carefully at the picture

"she's 14 weeks now right" "yes" the tech said "what was your impression ?" Queenie asked "it looked like some kind of possible abnormal growths to me but it came and went so quickly that i didn't form a definate opinion but i thought you should see it right away"

Queenie's brow furrowed but she didn't get that feeling that something in the pregnancy had gone wrong "thanks for the "heads up" we"ll recheck that angle again next time she comes in" and Natalynn's ultra sound was shelved until her next visit

Natalynn was in a hurry to get home

her son Michael was going to be a dancer in the Pow Wow later that month and there was still so much sewing to do on his dancing attire

she felt so well this pregnancy ,more energized than she'd been ever with Michael she was sure she would have a girl, the older women of the tribe had predicted it
A child of such stature and significance that many would know the truth of the creator's plan for her tribe

Such an auspicious prediction had not been given to the brith of a child in a very long time in her tribe
her emotions were buoyed up by it

*"yes" she thought "this will be a remarkable child"

"a child to change the destiny of her nation"

such an absurd thought in a primitive young womans head

aren't all happy pregnant young woman holding these dreams of their child's greatness

the Christian Virgin Mother must of felt that way over 2000 years ago

"Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way."

Native American saying


nan shartel Oct. 16, 2010 @ 11:05 a.m.

hey she's a terrific poet Mindy...i have her book of poetry "Original Fire"

this is one of her call "Rez Litany" and it certainly tell the story of the relationship between the white government and the native races

hope u like Natalynn and Mindy

i can see clearly in it how the Naive populations might want to be cured of the diseases the whiting of their population brought on them


nan shartel Oct. 16, 2010 @ 11:07 a.m.

the poem by Louise Erdlich Rez Litany Let us pray to those beatified within the Holy Colonial Church beginning with Saint Assimulus patron of residential and government boarding schools..whose skin was dark but miraculously bled white milk for all to drink ~~~~~ To cure the gut ache that resulted as 90% of Native American children are lastose intolerant... let us now pray to the patron saint of the Indian Health Services who is also the guardian of slot machines ~~~~~ Our Lady of Luck she who carries in one hand mistaken blood tests and botched surgeries...and in the other hand the heart of a courageous doctor squeezed dry ~~~~~ let us pray for the scared hearts of all good doctors and nurses....whose tasks are made manifold and more difficult by the twin saints of commodity food Saint Bloatinus and Saint Cholestrus who were martyred at the stake of body fat and who now reside in heaven at the gates of the Grand Casino Buffet ~~~~~ Saint Macaronia and Saint Diabetia hear our prayer it is terrible to be diminished toe by toe good Saint Pyromane enemy of the BIA deliver us from those who seek to bury us in files and triplicate documents and directives Saint Quantum...Martyr of Blood and Holy Protector of the Tribal Rolls assist us in the final shredding which shall proceed on the Day of Judgement so we may all rain down in a blizzard of bum pull tabs and unchosen lottery tickets which represent the souls of the faithfully departed in your name ~~~~~ your name written in original fire we mistook long ago for trader's rum pray for us...all you saints of white port four roses old grandad and night train good Saint Bingeous who fell asleep upside down on the cross and rose on the third day without even knowing he had died Saint Odium of the hundred-proof blood and Saint Tremens of the great pagan spiders dripping from the light fixtures ~~~~~ you powerful triumvirate intercede for us drunks stalled in bars float our asses off cracked stools and over to college where the true saints are ready to sacrifice their brain cells in for our brain cells in that holy exchange which is called learning ~~~~~ Saint Microcephalia...patron of huffers and dusters you of the cooked brain and mean capacity you of the simian palm line and poor impulse control you of the Lysol soaked sleeping with dogs underneathed the house hear our prayers which we utter backwards and sideways as nothing makes sense least of all your Abstinence Campaigns from which Oh Lord Deliver Us Saint Primapara..gravida...Humpeninabackseat you patrons of unsafe teenage sex and fourteen year old mothers pray for us now and at the hour of our birth ... amen


natalynn Oct. 16, 2010 @ 11:31 a.m.

thank you for the addition of Louise Erdlichs poem here nan

Erdlich like myself came from a mixed heritage

as you seem to have also Mindy

she was Chippewa and German

I've spent a great deal of my life teaching on Native American Reservations thru out the Southwest and Northwest

i lived on the Makah Rez for a few years and fell madly in love with the Indians of the Pacific Coast

i watched the Makah fight to reclaim their whaling rights and understood internally the importance of "one kill a year" for them

"For 500 generations they flourished until newcomers came... much was lost; much was devalued, but much was also hidden away in the hearts of the dispossessed"

i hope you are enjoying the book and will tell others about it

i will probably put up two posts a week of the book



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