The Medicine Woman


She started the day with a prayer, her face to the Morning Star
As the pink glow of a sunrise touched her from afar.
“Hau, Tunkasila Ksapa” her old voice softly said.
(Hello, Star of Understanding) and in greeting, nodded her head…
“Thanks for this day. Let me do my best, today for all my relations.”
And she nodded again acknowledging the infinite Star Nations.

The day was young, she walked alone down to the water’s edge,
Where the girl, not yet a woman, came to hear the words she said.
“Grandmother” was what she called her, but she was so much more…
The Healer, Teacher and Wise One, who had walked many lives before.

‘Teach me your magic “Unci”, I wish to be like you,
To walk the path of the healer, to Great Spirit to be true.’
The old woman sat down quietly, placed her basket on the ground;
Told the girl to place her hand inside, and tell her what she found.

‘But Unci, the basket’s empty’ she said with great concern.
But the wise woman simply smiled and said ‘You have much to learn.
We all have empty baskets on the day that we are born,
But the road we walk will offer us the tools we’ll need from thereon;
And our inner eyes and spirit will show us what we must find.
Each lesson brings us a knowing, to be carried deep inside.
And every year and season has some fruit for us to bear –
You must place it in your basket and keep it safely there.
Listen with your heart’s ears, to the words the Spirit’s speak.
You may be a simple woman, but you are never small or weak.
For we are the mothers and the teachers. We nurture and keep the flame,
The future life of all Tribes flows through a Woman’s veins.

So take up your own small basket – gather what Spirit guides you to,
For what you keep as medicine – will be what life gives to you.
See here!  Here in my basket! You may not see so much,
But it carries woman’s wisdom, and the love of Mother’s touch.
It holds the gifts of Mother Earth, of fire, water and air,
The medicine she has given me is an honour that I share.
In here you will find the prayers and the stories that I tell,
There is forgiveness, love and kindness – the tools that serve me well.
There’s remembering to smile, when winter winds blow long and cold,
And giving thanks for every day, each moment, young or old.
There is wisdom, and compassion – such magic I have learned.
All things that I have gathered, as the wheel of my life turns.
There is the honour for the Ancient Ones, and all they bring to me
For the present, past and future, are all a part of who we be.’

Then an old hand touched a young one, as she sought her full attention,

And their eyes connected deeply as she gave her admonition.

‘But there is no room in this small basket for sadness, rage or hate,
The things that do not serve me – I simply cast away.
I choose not to carry anger, regret or bitterness.
Forgiveness is a powerful tool that you should not forget.
So your walk is just beginning – your lessons still are new,
But remember as you journey, YOU choose what to take with you.
You too, may be a healer, learn the Medicine of the Earth,
Your destiny is written in the flow from birth to birth.
The Magic is there within you, both in knowledge and mystery,
Seek Great Spirit’s guidance, and you will have eyes to see.
So they might think your basket’s empty. But just smile and know with pride
A Woman’s Medicine’s unseen – It’s what you keep inside.