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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


November 16, 2002 - Issue 74


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Brother Eagle

by Richard Slater
credits: art: Crown of Gold by Alan M. Hunt

art: Crown of Gold by Alan M. HuntHere is a true story. It happened several years ago while I was working in Idaho.

I was driving to Boise, ID to finish a consultation job with a group of sugar refineries, located in southern Idaho. I had left home early that morning and was in the hills south of Nampa, ID when I first saw it. Sitting along the highway, an adult Golden eagle, dark brown feathers down its sides and wings, shiny gold colored feathers along its face.

I slowed the truck to look the eagle over as I drove by and for a split second I heard a voice inside me saying "Don't stop, Go". I looked at the eagle as I went by and I realized the bird was also watching me.

I proceeded down the highway for about a mile and then turned around. I had a feeling that I needed to go back to where I had seen the eagle. It was gone when I arrived. I parked the truck and looked over the ground along the road. I found nothing, no fur or feathers to indicate the bird had made a kill along the road. I recall thinking, how unusual, to find a Golden eagle sitting on the ground and then I noticed that there was no other traffic. I was the only one on the road for as far as the eye could see in either direction.

I got back in my truck and continued on towards Nampa. About ten miles later, I saw what appeared to be a bad accident. It looked like a car had pulled onto the highway, in front of a pickup. The Highway Patrol and an ambulance were there along the side of the road.

I went on to Boise, ID, finished my work in about a week and headed for home the following Saturday morning.

The south city limits of Nampa were behind me some ten miles now and I suddenly remembered the encounter with the eagle. I slowed the truck as I neared the place where the eagle had been. Of course, I never thought I would see the bird again, at least not sitting along the highway.

I stopped the truck and got out. I looked down the road. No bird. Then I scanned the hill ridges to the north and there perched high was the eagle. I walked across the road, closer to the bird and sat down on a rock. We sat there looking at each other, me on a rock below and the eagle on that high ridge, for a long time.

The Golden eagle call sounds like a high pitched whistle which trails off at the end and as I sat there on that rock I talked to the eagle, thanking it for making me stop the week earlier. The eagle called back to me.

Much time has passed since we and our brothers spoke the same language and each understood the other clearly, but our actions can still express our feelings and intentions towards each other.

Some of the People have said "Things like this don't happen anymore because we are not pilay (pure)". I would like to think that Our Creator continues to love us and still sends his Helpers to take care of us when we need them. And now my story has ended

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