Friday, September 23, 2022

When the World Was Young


In the lifetime before the lifetime before this one,
and again in the lifetime before that,
I danced under the blue sky in the sundance,
when I and the world were young.

The beat of the drum sang in my blood,
and my feet moved in joy,
and I danced
and I danced
as if it would last forever,
when I and the world were young.

The Old Ones smiled on me
with kind eyes, but with sadness too,
for their dreams foresaw suffering
for the people.

Over in the meadow, grey wolves flitted
in and out among the Standing People,
paws prancing high,
and the backs of the buffalo
carpeted the earth
in the days
when I and the world were young.

And now I live again
in an alien skin,
in a world grown cold.
The buffalo are gone and all that moves
is made of metal.
And I am an Old One
with kind, sad eyes,
watching the young dance
in a world gone mad,
and the ancient spirits are crying still,
remembering the days of
dancing under the sun
when they and I
and the world were young.

From 2015, shared with earthweal's open link. I wrote it after attending a Christmas concert at a First Nations school. The young lad above was one of many students, dancing for the animals in a circular dance called Everything Is One. So beautiful.


  1. This is a song that comes out from the heart and touches the sky. It's familiar feeling, and so under the skin, yet subtle and soft. Beautiful, truth-filled writing, Sherry.

  2. Wow...though I wonder if even the ancients foresaw such a rapid collapse and such gross inaction. What a beautiful poem, Sherry, loved it!

  3. Wonderful poem and photo Sherry !

  4. Ah, funny how so little has changed since you posted this first in 2015. A very touching poem.

  5. In the many lifetimes before this one
    there was dancing under the warm sun
    the beat of the drum the heart of the earth
    the ancestors knew the land's true worth

    Loved reading your words and the spirit
    lead me to leave you the words above.

    The ancestors must grieve at the world today. sigh..

  6. When we're young, the wolf skin and the dance are one ... when we're Old, all of youth dances for us. Too often to our dismay. Wonderful moment from the dance.

  7. This has a sing-song lilt to it and I love the repetition (image is pretty darn cool too).


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