25. Mishigamaa

I’ve seen him before
He wears green
Rich green
He is my gate keeper
Allowing me close enough to touch
the Wealth
     Of lands. Of waters
But never allowing me to linger long.

He checks on me
Polite smiles exchanged
I’ve seen him before
His cane, a status symbol
He always wears green
Emblazoned with the name of some
Indigenous place
Indigenous words
Indie genius Ivy League schools.

How beautiful
How mysterious
How powerful
The wind whirls
The water creeps up
Swallowing the beaches
And threatening their white glass cabins.

Prayers to the water beings
Prayers to the water beings
Heal my mom
Protect my sister
Comfort my aunt
Birth my daughter.

My education got me here
My culture got me here
My family got me here
My connection to my lands got me here.

There’s something dangerous about me
I can see it in his stance
I can feel it when we pass
I’m just discovering my power.