Thursday, August 27, 2009

Walking Dry River

I met my friend Walking-Dry-River in the mountains. This was the early seventies... I was twelve years old. Strange ways said I had a spirit-knowledge particle following me around and so I could go to a place and know things. Perhaps Walking-Dry-River saw this and decided to give me his story.

In the Highlands of Alba everywhere you looked there was water and everything was green. Water was falling down the rocks and crevices, it was soaking into the peat, it was dripping from the rocks... even the stones looked wet. You walked beside one of those rivers and you knew water was life.

One day I happened to find a path of stones and shale all winding like a snake and buried deeper into the landscape. There were lots of trees and bogs around, so what made that old river dry up? The winding pebbles and stones looked like old bones of a river whose waters once moved swift and brought life all the way down its path.

That was when Walking-Dry-River first appeared in my life. He was a warrior and medicine man. On his head was the skull of a bison and by his side was a hickory staff. These were ancient storm energies, manifesting strong wind and driving rain.

It seemed strange that Walking-Dry-River was carrying such power and yet his path was stony dry riverbeds. He did not say much, he just watched me walking along thinking about where the water had gone and why the old river bed was dry.

"The water is under the ground," he said at some point. I stopped and looked at him.

How did he know what I was thinking? How does he know where the water has gone? "I don't see it underground," was all I said.

I went back to following the dinosaur snaking trail of the riverbed. I could walk on the paths of great waters because the river was dry. How many millions of years might a river live before it dies?

"The water went underground way back up there," he pointed, "it is now very deep, flows another way."

I stopped to look at him, an ancient relic in a modern time. People today would laugh at Walking-Dry-River. They would ask him, "Where is your power?"

He would probably answer, "It's gone underground.. way back there.."

I sat down on an old grey stone and looked at Walking-Dry-River. Behind him was a subtle mirage of red canyons. He looked like he had come through a time portal whose doors remained open waiting for him to return.

I did not ask him what he meant. That is why Strange Ways said I had a spirit-knowledge particle following me around, I did not have to ask him what he meant, because I would find out.

By 2010 there were a lot of places once rich in water, whose rivers were now dried bone serpents and all those places had people clinging to those arteries of life. The greatest and most powerful serpents of the world were fading into the rocks and sand. With their demise the flesh of the rivers: birds, animals, insects, fish, plants and humans were fading with them.

I sat on the old grey lichen covered rocks and I looked back at Walking-Dry-River. Sometimes it can take a quiet mind many years to truly understand why things happen the way they do.

People may have asked Walking-Dry-River, "Where is your power of lightning, rain and wind?"

Having lost the wisdom themselves they are never around to find the right answer. They also disappeared - long ago - with the rivers... way back down that long dusty trail.