Thursday, November 4, 2010


I now have an "offical" move with me will you?
I'm going to

As soon as we figure it out.. i will import everything here.
thanks! MBB

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

the scars that remain

I am recovering slowly. At least to me slowly. The wreck really affected my heart and head in a way that ibuprophen cant' help.

I drove two places yesterday and the first time my body locked up and I got the worst migraine. The second time, my body locked up, I had the worst pressure behind my eyes. The second time i was driving us, the family, to the waterfall for an evening hike. mihigna said it was body memory. I hadn't even thought of that. I am well familiar with body memory, with my history. I guess I just never thought it would show up in something like this. I find myself wanting to edit my emotions regarding this experience, but stop myself, for myself.

The hike was a laborious effort for me. Mihigna said i was crazy for doing it. I thought the more I moved, the better I'd be. okay, the faster I'd be better. Mihigna said, "you have to deal with your pain the first 48 hours, then start returning to normal activity."

I need something, but I can't identify what that is.
Maybe it's too early, maybe I've ingested too much ibuprofen and not enough wakalyapi. maybe a walk will shake it off.....

Saturday, August 21, 2010


So, I decided I was going to enter the juried art show this year; and went with my gut as to what photos to enter. I chose five, and two of them won awards!!!


I'm sooo proud of myself!!!!!!!!

I entered fog and landscape, which I retitled, "Hanhepi waste" (good morning) and that won the Dooug Ballard memorial award!!

Then I entered Jump!

It was the pic of turtle I took at Merritt of her jumping; the sun is shining on her hair (very angel-esque) and her shadow is below her.

Seriously, I cannot stop smiling!! I'm soo freaking proud of myself.

Again, believe in yourself and amazing things will happen!!!!

I have more to say, but i'm going to go back to bed.

I'm sohappy sohappysohappy!!!!!

Rich saw them and said: "Now you can say you are an award winning photographer.

It just keep getting better!!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

a million miles an hour

I have that feeling again.
The butterfly on acid feeling.

I feel extremely driven to generate some work. Paying work, work that makes my morning commute on a plane and me living out of a suitcase and sleeping in hotel.
Now, more than ever I am keenly aware that I have the talent and the ability to support myself with my art.
I have always been able to do that,(thank god) but pre-child, I just took a lackadaisical approach; I'd get a few jobs here and there, no rush, no worry.

Perhaps it feels different now, because I have a child and so I feel as if I have been removed from the art world for the last two years; and it's time for me to emerge from that black hole.
Maybe its because I'm in this art no mans land, and I'm desperate to be back among my own kind. I just know it's an uncomfortable feeling and one I either need to fix, (hence, get the hell out of dodge as soon as possible) or find a way to make peace with, hence get gigs all over and travel again, which is really what I LOVE.
No matter what, I need to get on the ball and
*get my poetry book published,
*finish the book on wakaneja
*find a publisher for my lakota children's' stories
*find a publisher for my coffee table photo book.

*get some contacts who will be all over my ass in NY; for either my writing or my photography, or ideally, BOTH.

The one thing I have seen these last two years is, there is a lot of stuff out there, some of it good and some of it, not so good. But I know how amazing my work is, and I have just got to figure out how to get it into the hands of the people who will see and push it. I can't afford to be lackadaisical anymore.

It feels good to still have this many irons in the fire, but I would like a bit more fluidity to it as well.

I am not making any sense right now, because my brain wont' stop firing.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Writers retreat

The WAN writers retreat was amazing. We started out with locals and then and by Sunday, we had two ladies join us from North Platte and one lady from Ainsworth! It was a great eclectic mix with everyone bringing their various levels of writing experience and life experiences to the table and that is what made the difference I think.

My workshop was a hit and the energy is the room was at a vibrant level, this stayed with us for much of the weekend.

I was so proud of all the participants, they absolutely trusted me and each other with their hearts, their vulnerabilities, and their writing. (Which I feel, are often all rolled in one.) There were a few who were in various stages of processing some grief and I'm glad they came, because they are now equipped with a tool to make that process easier.

There were really two things that came out at the retreat, and they were both things that tie humans together, no matter the gender. The one was grief and the other was realizing we dont take time for ourselves to nourish our souls enough. Granted the women talked of this mostly, as the men listened intently, thinking; "Oh crap, does that mean I have to do my own laundry and my own cooking?" (Ha Ha Bob and Dan!)

Speaking of men,there were only two in attendance for the whole workshop, old cowboys. But no need to worry about them, they were totally in their element, flanked on all sides by beautiful women!
It was so amazing because at the beginning, I don't think anyone had any intention of sharing their writing, but EVERYONE did. And that was the glue that bonded everyone together... even the words were spoken: "I thought I was the only one who felt this way."
And THAT is why I love writing, writing retreats and groups. Because you find out how UN alone you really are.
By Sunday we were all exhausted, because we had processed so much through our writing, that we were a bit draggy; but very happy.

I kept hearing people talking of how the retreat was healing, and that really touched me. That is not necessarily what I went in to do, but process took over what needed to happen, did.

The women and men I met as strangers at the start of the retreat walked away as friends and all now reside in my heart.

We have formed a writing group and we met for the first time yesterday.
But more on that, later.

Friday, July 23, 2010

My new post!!

My new post is up at Life As A Human... AND I'm in the Author spotlight for the website! So, go read it!!!!!

Monday, July 19, 2010

notes to self

Wow, wow, wow.
I am so refreshed and rejuvinated and so much clearer, following this weekend.
That writing workshop, (it was really a retreat)was so incredible! My workshop went fabulously, my readings were amazing, and the whole experience was healing and inspirational for everyone there. I should have had my books to sell, but I didn't, so I know now, that needs to be remedied.

There is so much to say about it, but I'm not sure I can right now, I have returned home, put the turtle to bed, cleaned my kitchen and been talking with Mihigna about our 7 directions wellness business. I need to just stop and breathe and organize my thoughts.

Friday, July 16, 2010


So, the WAN writer's conference starts tonight. I'm excited! I've got all the material I'm going to read ready and I've got my notes jotted down for my workshop presentation.
This is such a good thing for me right now, I really need this.
I hope I can separate Ina-ness from proffessional author much better this time around than when I gave my reading at the Staying Alive conference. That is the problem that I have laid my writing by the wayside for Inahood and without it, I'm spiritually, artistically drowning.
But, I'm working on it. Turtle is getting older and that gives me more time to write, if I am responsible about it anyway.
Okay, I want to go get more writing done while she is sleeping.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A new canon, baby

So, things in my family are slowly returning to normal, post visit from an old friend.. in years, not so much in age.

One of the things her visit did do,(and there were so many others) was make me realize that there needs to be a wasicu reading list. For real, I'm serious. Having her here for a week, I felt like I was literally living out a Kent Nerburn book.

It would be ideal for people like her, who: A) never shut up, which makes learning anything impossible! and B) a quick reference guide for the completely ignorant or misinformed person this would also include the ones who only have the over romanticized and way off base ideas about our culture.

See, these would provide a look into some of the history, some of the important historical events, (from the REAL historians) many issues we have come up against, come from, and why some things are the way they are.
This will be a growing list, as I think of them, and there are sooo many.
But I realized this needed to be done, because she was here for a week, and she could have easily learned something and gotten more information and a quick education at the same time.

So here they are: In NO particular order other than when they came into my head.

*Birthed From Scorched Hearts,
Genocide of the Mind,
Eating Fire, Tasting Blood:
all edited by Marijo Moore.
I have included these, not because my work is in them, but because they have some amazing, knowledgeable writers in them and they cover really important issues in Indian History that let the reader learn about our history without wanting to fall asleep

Custer Died For Your Sins: Vine Deloria Jr.
If you have read it, you understand why I'm including this, if you have not, then read it and you will understand.

Dammed Indians: The Pick-Sloan Plan and the Missouri River Sioux1944-1980: Michael Lawson
This issue is dear to my heart; I have done extensive research on this, and presented it various places.

Salt Camp: Ollie Napesni: a dear, sweet woman who taught at Sinte Gleska, (my tribal alma mater) This is a really great book if you want history laced with a true story.

The Dakota Way of Life: Ella Cara Deloria

And because they provide such an accurate (and hilarious) other side aspect, I have to include Kent Nerburn's
Neither Wolf Nor Dog
The Wolf at Twilight

There are so many others, which I will include, but it's about 12:30 a.m and I'm exhausted, so that is all for now.
And yes, I'm fully aware that they are pretty much Lakota based,(save the anthologies) but as a Lakota, that is the place I naturally come from first. (Plus, you know it, we are just plain kick ass!)

Lakotas in the house, Lakotas in the house, Lakotas in the house so wat ya gonna do?

Song:Lakotas by Lakota Empire) Turtle LOVES to sing this song!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


I will be giving a writing workshop at a writing conference in Valentine July 16-18, 2010. I will also be giving two public readings. More details to come. So please sign up and come spend some time with me and let's scribble, scribble, scribble!!

Hope you are all well,

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

More than just letters

Tiwahe Wica Yu Wita Win

I've been thinking lately of my Lakota name. I always want to put it on things, i.e my phone(s); but never can, because the character allowance, is not long enough. it stops at Wit. If I type it in with no spaces, it will stop at: tiwahewichayuwitawi. Which, I guess might be OK. But I know better. It could be seen as acceptable as the shortened version of Win, or properly, Winyan.

I say I know better, because I do. I was taught the proper way to use my Language and why we need to use it that way. Even though, as the days go by, this concept seems to be slipping away with the ozone.
An elder of mine and I have had many discussions on how our culture has become what I call the 7-11 culture. Easy, fast, instant gratification. (I could post once a day everyday for the next year on THAT alone.) This isn't right. Our culture has always had its very own language and rules for the language, reasons for WHY words are the way they are. As an alumni of Sinte Gleska University, I will ALWAYS, ALWAYS, be for, use first, and defend (adamantly, if need be), our "true" language. The language that was put into print because of Albert White Hat.
Back to my name. Now, the proper word for Woman, is Winyan. Over time it has been acceptable to use Win. However, to use Wi, is shortening it for mere convenience, the word Wi has it's own meaning namely, the sun.

Knowing that, I refuse to perpetuate the convenience of my culture; I will not allow my name to be bastardized and shortened to Wi. First of all, my name is sacred, in the sense that it was given to me by my father, it was picked especially for me, and(to my foremost knowledge,) it is directly and correctly translated as is, without any adjustments needing to be made. Meaning, he did not have to come up with a Lakota translation for an English word.
I am VERY proud of my name. It envelops completely, my journey home and all the stepping stones that were put in place on that journey. It gave me goosebumps when I received it, because I knew what it meant, and flashed on a few specific times in my life when these events had happened. In a life so far away, and so foreign from the people whose blood flowed through my veins. It was another confirmation that the spirits had kept their hands in my life, and I had not been tossed carelessly to the greater world beyond.

I, by no means, am a fluent speaker, but I'm a constant student, as are most people,even in the English language. But this is what I know. I AM a Lakota Winyan, I am an Ina, a member of the Sicangu Nation, and therefore, it is my duty to not let our language, (or our ways) get bastardized by the wasicu "scholars" who want to make money off of it, and who, by the way DO NOT send one penny of that money back here to our tribe, our university OR our reservation. Nor can I allow it to drift away on the morning mist. I know that once it's gone, it's gone for good. And then we will be no better than, common mainstream Americans who once had a culture, but don't know much about it now.
Had I not returned home, I'd have been a Indian with no tribe, no language, no pride. But I have returned, I have taken my place in the hoop, and now I have this gorgeous daughter who speaks the language, knows her culture. She will grow up with the ceremonies, the traditions, the everyday, the this-is-what-we-do-because- this-is-who-we-are. She, will not know any different. As it should be. You cannot live your culture when it's "cool", "fun" or easy. If you are living as you should be, it will rarely be easy.
We have had far too many generations of soul-wounded, displaced, lost children who gravitate and latch onto any form of connection... (I.E, gangs). The time for that is over. We must do our parts to re instill the culture in ourselves, our lives, our children, our tribe. Do we have the answers to EVERYTHING? No. But that is what our tiwahe, tiyospaye and oyate, is for.

PS: I purposely did not translate my name. Maybe on a another day.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Mary Black Bonnet

(For:"Inala" SBC)

I want to engulf you,
in bubble wrap.

Carry you gently.

Not because you are fragile or weak.
Anything but.

Rather Immense in your sacredness, wisdom
spirit and kindness.

All we need to be.

Some strive for it,
others look on.
Their insecurities flashing, blinding their vision;
sunbeams on a car bumper.

As they cruise into the sunset
too young to care for this moment.

They don't see what lies ahead.

In its worst form.

Strong Proud warriors,
now common sheep.
The hard fought battle
can't be over!
Not yet. Not like this.

This war has been too long,
claimed victims too many, brought victories too few.

For a flip of the hair,
the boom-boom of bass
in a hot rez rod.

As they leave their
Proud, mutilated, Beautiful, culture
in the rear view mirror.

When the dust clears,
a raw, gaping hole left in its wake.

As they wave to us,
from the other side of the glass.