a Lumbee story
I love this land dotted with abandoned old barns and smokehouses now filled only with memories of another time... they tell of a forgotten tribe in forgotten times and oh my, how much the old clapboard houses and fading worksheds can tell us if we would choose to be still and look at our past instead of speeding by it with disregard.
We are so blessed ...for we live in a land we intimately know like "no other place on earth." It is but the few who can make such a claim to the land they call home....We are the blessed....We are the survivors... We are the prodigy of warriors whose graves we drive past each day ...
And so I like to do small things, like stopping along the journey to really look at what resembles what must have been a plow or a tobacco crate or crib. And Many times I leave with only more pictures in my camera, but my brother, sometimes ...just sometimes, I leave inspired to be the best I can be because THEY...our grandparents and great grandparents were the best THEY could be everyday and I know this to be true, how? Because they survived so that we can now thrive.
And those words my friend, came from a rusty old red tractor sitting in a cleared field down "nyear" the schoolhouse....🌻
JoJo Brooks Shifflett
|Anita Jo Shifflet with Dennis Banks.|
One has to stand still to know this story, not move to know the motion of the past, and one needs to care enough to listen in silence without rushing to the next moment, the next thought! Jo Jo, in your story a phrase caught the rhythms, in my ear, of Ubuntu. I heard it catching the universality of your storytelling.
"I leave inspired to be the best I can be because THEY...our grandparents and great grandparents were the best THEY could be everyday ...Because they survived so that we can now thrive..."
This concept, Ubuntu, is far away from Western ideologies and much to do with Lumbee and other nations here on Turtle Island. This interconnection is a language you speak very well. - Gregory E. Woods, Keeper of Stories