RAIN ON THE LODGES
© Jane Cassidy
Rain is falling all around us. You can hear the rhythmic pounding
the raindrops on the canvas, of the raindrops on the ground,
while we gather in
the tipi, warm and dry and safe and sound,
to share the warmth of friendship as
we pass the pipe around.
Now the shadowplay of fire weaves a
pattern on the bright-
ly painted smokestained canvas cover of the lodge with
From outside it seems a shining spirit
lantern whose inviting
warmth and inner golden glow add beauty to the night.
Wisps of acrid smoke that linger, for
the smokeflaps have been set
not to let the smoke escape so much as to keep out
mingle with the sage and sweetgrass and the honest smell of sweat
sacred breath: tobacco from the passing calumet.
In the dark the wind that whistles
'round our canvas cone coccoon
steals away the shroud of clouds that covered
our Grandmother Moon.
Now the velvet midnight sky's a robe
with shining star-beads strewn.
The storm is done. The rising sun will dry the mud by