they still drift through morning mist,
and walk the sacred paths
of their fathers.
Guardian oaks still embrace the People.
Meandering branches lean low,
give their clambering children
an easy climb
up high to where acorns
fall in the western wind
AUTHOR’S NOTE: The Suisunes people, called The People of the West Wind, lived for over 10,000 years in the area where I now live… but they nearly died out within a generation of exposure to European missionaries seeking to save their souls. They would have eluded the attention of the Spanish longer had they not given refuge to escaped mission Indians. In 1810 several dozen of these gentle people committed suicide rather than submit to the Spanish.
If you listen carefully in the morning breeze you can still hear their laughter.