Thursday, September 15, 2005

Breath of Ancestors

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By Ysaye Barnwell

Poem is placed on the bridge over the creek at

Esalen where water rushes from the mountains

To the ocean.

We invite you to enter a place between worlds. It is the space that lives at the end of one breath before the beginning of the next. The base of this canyon is a portal between the mountains and vast ocean. It is one place surrendering itself into the next. The silent crossing of this bridge invites you to step out of the past and into the future. With each holy step you are becoming a part of the history of this land. If you are tired of who comes with words, words but no language, come to this bridge and listen. Listen to the tree branches dancing in the wind, the sweet sound of the creek water laughing, and the rhythm of your own heart beating. The spirit of the forest calling you in a language with no words.

Listen more often to things than to beings.

Listen more often to things than to beings.

‘Tis the ancestors’ breath when the fire’s voice is heard

‘Tis the ancestors’ breath in the voice of the water



Those who have died have never left

The dead are not under the earth

They are in the rustling trees

They are in the groaning woods

They are in the crying grass

They are in the moaning rocks

The dead are not under the earth

Those who have died have never, never left

The dead have a pact with the living.


At 4:39 AM, Blogger Imogen Crest said...


At 5:27 AM, Blogger Heather Blakey said...

you will love the Isle of Ancestors Sylvia.

At 1:46 AM, Blogger Gwen M. Myers said...

Sylvia love,
I can hear the the Native American music accompaniment to those glorious words.
I plan to print them up and recite them to my Shaman Staff tomorrow under the full moon. What glorious magic it will create!!!

At 8:45 AM, Blogger Karen said...

This is gorgeous.

At 2:46 PM, Blogger SylviaK said...

Hi All,
The poem was placed in the perfect place to make it meaningful. The sounds of wind,water,the trees and rocks were all there as you read the poem.
Gwen,that must have been beautiful to read under the full moon too. So happy you are using the poem.


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