The Sound it Made

I remember someone told me a story.

A story about the St. Mary’s rapids.

The rushing water that I grew up with in Sault Ste. Marie.

A border town that is divided by canals and the rapids.

They swirl and run over rocks and through my dreams.

The storyteller spoke of these rapids being a meeting place for many nations.

And that the land and the waterways looked differently; especially the rapids.

That they were larger.

That the sound was like tremendous thunder.

Before the canals and the international bridge

Before the borders separated families and communities.

The storyteller talked about how loud the rapids were.

As loud as the Thunderbirds.

As loud as Niagara Falls.

I wondered what they sounded like.

Rapid waters blessing those that drank the tears of Mother Earth.

Vegetation, animals and fish all need water for survival.

How we care and what we do to it, is reflected in what others drink and play in.

All life is water.

All life is sacred.

We cannot be sacred without water.

We cannot have life if there is no water.

The rapids seem hollow now.



I wonder what they sounded like.

Before someone divided up the land.

Split up families.

Disrupted bloodlines.



Dead water.



Loss of land.

Loss of identity.

Loss of sacredness.

Loss of life.

I wonder what they sound like.

I have depression and seasonal affective disorder.

My mind rushes and my thoughts collide.

I find ceremony in listening to the water.

I hate the clouds.

But I love the rain.

I think of home.

Of the St. Mary’s River and of the rapids.

One day, I thought about this story in the shower.

And my tears began to fall.

Because I’ll never know what they sounded like.

But my ancestors did.

So I find comfort in that.




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