Posts filed under ‘.North_America’

The Legend of the Cempasúchil Flower


The Legend of the Cempasuchil Flower
The Day of the Dead Flower

This wonderful love story began when the two young Aztecs were still little. They used to spend all their spare time playing and enjoying discovering their town together. Although Xochitl was a delicate girl, her family let her join in the adventures of her neighbor Huitzilin. With time, it was only natural that their love would flourish.

They particularly enjoyed hiking to the top of a near mountain where they would offer flowers to the Sun god Tonatiuh. The god seemed to appreciate their offering and would smile from the sky with his warm rays. On a particularly beautiful day at the top of the mountain, they swore that their love would last for ever.

When war broke out the lovers were separated as Huitzilin headed to fight and protect their homeland.

Soon the dreaded news of Huitzilin‘s death reached Xóchitl. She felt her world falling to pieces, her heart completely torn.

She decided to walk one last time to the top of the mountain and implore the sun god Tonatiuh, to somehow join her with her love Huitzilin. The sun moved by her prayers threw a ray that gently touched the young girl’s cheek. Instantly she turned into a beautiful flower of fiery colors as intense at the sun rays.

Suddenly a hummingbird lovingly touched the center of the flower with its beak.

It was Huitzilin that was reborn as a handsome hummingbird. The flower gently opened its 20 petals, filling the air with a mysterious and lovely scent.

The lovers would be always together as long as cempasuchil flowers and hummingbirds existed on earth.

This is how the cempasúchil flower came to be the Day of the Dead Flower.

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October 31, 2019 at 11:25 pm Leave a comment

Indigenous Plant Diva

Kamala Todd | 2008 | 9 min

T’Uy’Tanat, also known as Cease Wyss, is from the Squamish First Nation in Vancouver, British Columbia. She has grown up learning about the plant foods and medicines of her traditional territory. Living in the city, Cease is used to practising her culture in an urban habitat — she harvests, grows food, and teaches people about the indigenous plants of this rainforest ecosystem. This plant-rich film reminds us that everywhere we walk in North America, we are on indigenous land rich with history, knowledge, and deep roots. Listening to the stories of the land can help us all to connect more deeply with our urban environments, and learn the unique matrix of plants and other life that are indigenous to where we live. Indigenous knowledge is essential to rebuilding sustainable communities. Cease Wyss offers a beautiful vision of how to learn from the land and the plant teachers all around us.

October 9, 2019 at 3:25 pm Leave a comment

National Parks of the USA

Happy NPS Birthday!

NATIONAL PARKS OF THE U.S.A.
Written by Kate Siber
Illustrated by Chris Turnham

Take a tour of America’s great outdoors and discover the beauty and diversity of its most iconic and majestic national parks.

August 25, 2019 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

Fly, Flight, Fugit

by Squeak Carnwath

“When I’m in a plane,” said Squeak Carnwath, “I often think about things that fly naturally. This work is about those things—bees, flags, snow, bugs, mercury, rain, and flights of fancy.” Much of Carnwath’s work is about her own thoughts, reactions, and memories.

What other things that fly naturally come to your mind?
What does ‘fugit’ mean?

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August 6, 2019 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

The Redwoods

Poem by Joseph P. Strauss


Art by Alice Shaw

Here, sown by the Creator’s hand.
In serried ranks, the Redwoods stand:
No other clime is honored so,
No other lands their glory know.

The greatest of Earth’s living forms,
Tall conquerors that laugh at storms;
Their challenge still unanswered rings,
Through fifty centuries of kings.

The nations that with them were young,
Rich empires, with their forts far-flung,
Lie buried now-their splendor gone:
But these proud monarchs still live on.

So shall they live, when ends our days,
When our crude citadels decay;
For brief the years allotted man,
But infinite perennials’ span.

This is their temple, vaulted high,
And here, we pause with reverent eye,
With silent tongue and awestruck soul;
For here we sense life’s proper goal:

To be like these, straight, true and fine,
to make our world like theirs, a shrine;
Sink down, Oh, traveler, on your knees,
God stands before you in these trees.

Strauss Poems

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July 20, 2019 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

Rabbit on the Moon

World tales of the Moon

Long ago, the gods tried four times to get the Sun in the sky but each time the Sun disappeared. All the world was cold and in darkness. The Aztec gods came together and tried to think of a way to get the Sun to stay in the sky.

One of the gods said, “We must build a big fire and one of us must throw ourselves into the fire. Well, they all thought it was good idea — for someone else.

Finally a god named Tecuiziztecatl said, “Yo lo hare, I will do it, yo so poderoso, I am powerful.

Then Nanahautzin was chosen. He said, “Yo no soy poderosa. I am not powerful. It is true that I have been sick and my body is covered with sores but I am a good man.”

So the gods built a huge fire and danced and drummed around the fire for four days and nights. On the fourth night, all the gods arranged themselves into two lines. Tecuiziztecatl was chosen first. He ran toward the fire but when he got to it, he stopped. Then he looked around and said, “Tengo miedo. I am afraid.” This happened three more times.

Then it was Nanahuatzin’s turn. He stood at the beginning of the lines, determined. He ran down between the gods and when he got to the edge, he jumped into the fire with a shout of joy. He went into the sky and became the Sun. Tecuiziztecatl was so ashamed that he too leaped into the fire and another huge flaming Sun was in the sky.

The gods looked up and said, “Ah, this is good. Now we have two Suns.” One of the gods said, “Wait, Tecuitziztecatl has no right to shine as bright as brave Nanahautizin!”

The god picked up a round-eared rabbit and threw it at Tecuitziztecatl. It went flying, spinning across the sky and landed hard against him and knocked some of the light from him. Tecuiziztecatl became the Moon, la luna. Nanahautzin became the Sun, la sol.

When there is a full Moon, an outline of the rabbit the god threw that night can still be seen.

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July 18, 2019 at 8:25 pm 2 comments

Ground Bees of Satwiwa

Happy World Bee Day

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May 20, 2019 at 5:20 am Leave a comment

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