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The NDN Silver Blog

It’s another perfect, if unseasonably warm, November day, our world wrought in turquoise and gold and touches of remnant green. The winter spirits are taking full advantage of the warmth, using the daylight hours to stockpile food for the cold days to come. The winter birds are nesting, too — some earlier than usual, some […]

Today is bright, the light golden and warm beneath a turquoise sky. The edge is off the chill now, at least until next Thursday, iff the forecast is to be believed. And while we know that these unseasonal temperatures are not a good sign, direct result of climate change that they are, for us they […]

We awakened this morning to a cold newly deep, so encompassing and fierce that it seemed to have frozen the colors from the sky. Dawn was a pale affair, sky mostly white with the light of a moon not quite yet full and a sun not quite yet risen, and even now at midday, our […]

In the outside world, today is a day to honor the tools and the fodder of colonialism, of empire, of genocide. We don’t do that here. Our peoples have their own warrior traditions, ones that were perforce diverted and sublimated into the larger colonial one. the fact that our peoples volunteer in greater numbers than […]

Week’s end births a new week, and we have come full circle: back to the horse, in company now with a small wingéd spirit. This morning looks like mid-November, even if the mercury is still on track to rise a bit too high. White clouds that trailed around the horizon at dawn, the departing manes […]

After a week of seasonal cold rendered colder by unseasonal winds, the warmth is back today. For the moment, the air is still and sunny, and the wild creatures have emerged in force to enjoy a few more hours of comfortable preparation for winter. The birds are everywhere this day, from small spirits like the […]

Our world here has emerged, warm and bright, from the cloak of night. The dark hours, wrapped in robes of fog, gave way early to a glittering frost beneath bands of dove-gray cloud and brilliant sun. Now, the only haze in the air is that of a town’s worth of wood smoke, held close to […]

Yesterday’s much-ballyhooed snow never materialized here; at day’s end, the winds sent the storm southeast of us, and any chance of precipitation with it. This morning dawned much colder than yesterday, although with enough residual heat to have trapped low-lying clouds into bands of icy fog around the mountain slopes and peaks. We have a […]

Our small world here has changed dramatically overnight. Sunny highs into the sixties have given way to skies of pewter and lead, clouds heavy with the snow that will arrive tonight. The winds of the last several days have turned most of the trees to skeletons, their branches now bare bones reaching for remnant warmth […]

Clear and warm again today, and still, it’s impossible to shake the sense of change upon the wind. It’s nowhere near cold enough yet for snow, much less to drive the elk down from the mountains in search of food, but that day is not so far off now. Here at Red Willow, the elk […]

Early dark means early light, and the day has dawned cold and mostly clear. Even so, feathery clouds span the southern sky from east to west, heralding a change on the wind. The forecast for snow at midweek has been retracted, for the moment, but the wild creatures remain busy preparing for winter. The feel […]

At last, sunrise is at a normal hour for the season. Despite the now seemingly early dark, we have no love for so-called Daylight Savings Time;; it’s merely one more layer of colonial, capitalistic artifice imposed on a world that would do well to cease trying to control elemental forces. [And yes, what you’ve heard […]

This is the first day this week that we have had both clear skies and still air. Without the wind, the world feels suddenly warm again, far warmer than the mercury would suggest. As we come to the end of this week of All Souls’, it feels, finally, as though the world is really down […]

At last, a warm-up: After a deep freeze that lasted the better part of a week, November first arrives with more seasonal temperatures in tow. It won’t help the trees, of course; the early freeze has swept most of their leaves to the ground now, and those that remain are increasingly skipping their usual fiery […]

Dawn has brought bright sun and bitter cold. Even now, with the sun high in the sky, the wind chill hovers near zero. The atmosphere is one of near-perfect clarity, save for the inversion layer that hugs the land, a product of several thousand woodstoves and fireplaces working overtime to expel the chill. Today is […]

We sit this morning at the center of the whirlwind — not a storm, precisely, but the polar vortex it left in its wake. On the other side of the mountains to the east, a long stretch of Interstate is shut down by snow and ice, or at least by the accidents occurring on roads […]

Eight in the morning, and the wind is already howling. The light is as thin as the air, skies clear save for the smoke plume wending its way around the northern horizon. There’s something almost artificial about it, as though it’s captured and held suspended by the icy clarity of the atmosphere around it. As […]

Today, we sit at the center of the winds. We have had snow intermittently; a quick inch beginning around 8:00 this morning, then tapering off and mostly melted by  noon. We’e hd a flurry or two since, and still the snowclouds cling to the horizon on all sides. But for the moment, the sun shines, […]

Cold air has given way to a temporary warming trend, one that will last only until tonight. For tomorrow, the forecast predicts snow once again — not, apparently, our more usual snows whipped up from rains in the Pacific, but one driving down from due  north on 40-mile-an-hour winds. Here, the trickster winds of early […]

What the outside world calls Halloween is now five short days hence. It’s not an Indigenous holiday on these lands, and yet, as modern holidays go, it’s one of the most celebrated by our peoples. The reasons are many, and complex. Part of it, no doubt, is the very fact that it’s not one of […]

After yesterday’s early snow, the world outside the window is crisscrossed with lines of brown and white. We got around three inches, all well before noon, and by mid-afternoon, the majority of it had already begun to melt. Still, it’s the first real sign of winter, and the wild creatures have taken note. Whole clans […]

This is the time when the spirits walk. In our cultures, we know this truth; it’s not a matter of opinion, nor one of what the dominant culture calls superstition. If we were unaware, the dogs show us otherwise every year. It is always this way from October to year’s end, as we move into […]

Despite the clear skies at dawn, the clouds are moving in fast now — still high and light, but coalescing fast in anticipation of the snow now slated to arrive tonight. Outside, the very air seems to hold its breath, a feeling of waiting enveloping the land. There is a sense, as is usual at […]

Two days ago, it was a trickster wind; two days from now, it will be the first snow of the season. As we fall inexorably toward October’s end, our world here at Red Willow turns to cold bones and bare branches, the sharp and frost-rimed edges of a skeletal earth. At the moment, there are […]

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