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Friday, July 12, 2019

Letting Nature Speak

This month marks the anniversary of the birth of a great Native American leader, environmentalist, poet, essayist AND actor.  Chief Dan George, born in 1899, became a household name in the 1960s and '70s for both his poetry and his acting, especially in the award-winning 1970 Dustin Hoffman film Little Big Man.
George was born in Canada and served as chief of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, a coastal band located in North Vancouver, B.C., played Cheyenne chief Old Lodge Skins in this major acting role after having done a few roles on TV and in smaller movies beginning at age 60.  His famous line in the movie was “My heart soars like a hawk,” based in part on his poem “My heart soars,” which is his best-known written work.  The poem was recited by Canadian born actor Donald Sutherland at the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.  For Saturday's Poem, here is George's,
                My Heart Soars

 The beauty of the trees, the softness of the air,

the fragrance of the grass ... speaks to me.

The summit of the mountain, the thunder of the sky,

The rhythm of the sea ... speaks to me.

The faintness of the stars, the freshness of the morning,

the dewdrop on the flower ... speaks to me.

The strength of the fire, the taste of salmon, the trail of the sun,

and the life that never goes away ... they speak to me.

And my heart soars.

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