First Peoples

Snake Leaves the Snake

To the Nimiipu, water was the strongest spiritual substance. Note that the snake that leaves the Snake River here at Buffalo Eddy, never arrives at the (older) shamanic figure.


That’s because it’s not a character in a narrative. It’s a representation of potentiality — or tension, if you will.  It is water. The tension between the old shamanic figure and the newer (but still old) snake, or water figure, is a new thing, something in the air. It is there the people are, hidden and revealed between action and stasis.

1 reply »

  1. Between the mystery of spirit and the unfolding of potential is where we find ourselves. Like water, the tension, where we live, is between surface and depth. Holding both, without drowning and without missing the point, is a difficult swim. I’m not actually sure I know what either of us is talking about, but I’ve been rereading your post and thinking for some time now, thanks for that.


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