In all Creation there is great beauty. It is life. And in creation there are the Lifegivers. Our Mother the Earth who gives life to all living creatures who dwell upon her.

And WOMEN - the LIFEGIVERS.

SQUAW

"You squaw!" you said to me, your words filled with hatred, a word said again and again to American Indian women.

A word meant to degrade, a word of ignorance coming from your lips - a word that your Ancestors made to become a bad thing another way to try to destroy the Indian.

But in your laughter hurling this word with hatred, a stronger sound could be heard - the strength of women's voices - all saying the same word. LIFEGIVER. LIFEGIVER.

We are the Lifegivers - and you Mr. White Man have simply said what has gone on for too long now- from the time your Ancestors first stepped on this shore, to this time, this year, as they continue their war. Big Mountain. Sacred Burial Sites. Murders and injustices and continual strife - is the game you play again and again, since the beginning of time, when you did win.

But you DID NOT Win! Mr. White Man with scorn for the American Indian - we are strong as before and you will NEVER win.

The word of hate you hurled at me, hurt but a moment and then I was free. Free of hatred toward you and what you said. Because to do that, I'd be just as bad. Bad as you, bad to the bone, a man with no respect for women - a woman who gave you life, who suffered in pain - to bring you to Earth to live your life a free man. And this is how you repay the LIFEGIVERS?

Indian women are strong and proud - they have survived all that has been done to them, their husbands and child. Their Mother and Fathers and sisters and brothers - we have survived for we are strong - we are the LIFEGIVERS and your word is your own.

Your own price which you will pay - for such disrespect to THE LIFERGIVERS this way.

Mother Earth - who gives life to all. The strong, Indian women and the women of all - the Four Sacred Colors of Humankind - the white, brown, red and yellow - the women of life, and The Circle Never Ends.

So, Mr. White Man you called me a squaw but you do not know that your hatred is wrong and that hatred turned around, is what makes the women STRONG - The Strong and Proud Indian Women, THE LIFEGIVERS, YOUR MOTHER.

THE LIFEGIVERS

Svhyeyi Aga~Evening Rain

March 10, 2001

8:46 pm est

Some beautiful words from my friend Sharon Walkingbear:

"Native women have strength and beauty - equally compared to the wind, the water, the sun and the earth. Hearts bigger than the universe and attitudes to match."

If this poem offends you, I am sorry. This word offends all Native American Indian/First Nations' Women. It is a word of hate like all other words used against people. By burying our heads in the sand, and through ignorance in not knowing how offensive this word is, perhaps these words, I have written, will help you to understand that this is a degrading word.

Think before you speak. Stop the hate in your heart.

The above graphic was created by Melody Creations.

Music Jay Begaye - "Mother's Honor Song"

Jay Begaye

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