Hunting: The Cherokee Way
( Tennessee, Georgia, the Carolinas )
After abstaining sex four days,
Fasting, and purification,
Prayers to wind, river, mountain gods
Asking for a successful hunt.
To listen while one is hunting;
The thrash of hooves, a rhythmic brush,
In time with pheasant wings beating,
And standing with the stag laid down.
To ask the gods to forgive him,
To thank the spirit, drink its blood
To harness of its strength & speed.
To take the meat of deer and fowl,
The fish, the berries, native roots,
To share with those less fortunate,
Our brothers, sisters, as we all
Rejoin the clan of Mother Earth.