Thursday, July 25, 2013

Poem: Bawating (Ojibwa/Chippewa word for "Gathering Place"


A chill air wakes summer warmed waters
into a weave of mists
as tentacles of time
tempt the ghosts of a thousand yesterdays
to rise up and greet the dawn.

Warriors in wisps and white feathers
and slivery maidens
with hair of corn silken silver
milked from the moon
join in a dance of remembrance.

But their fires burn cold
and soft
with flames of quicksilver
like minnows swimming skyward
and smoke of earthbound clouds.


*According to Wikipedia and a Sault St Marie casino’s web site (?) Bawating is a Chippewa word meaning “gathering place.” I will investigate further…. But I chose that word for a title, because the area that inspired this poem is in Hamburg Township, Michigan, which near as I can tell was a Chippewa gathering place and hunting grounds. To my understanding, this area was not a place of permanent residence until the current townships were formed in the early to mid 1800s.

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