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Jake George

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Member Since: Nov, 2004

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Grandfather's Song
by Jake George   

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Books by Jake George
· Good Night My Sweet Baboo
· A New Dawn
· The Red Man In Me
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                >> View all


Historical Fiction

Publisher:  Arche Books ISBN-10:  1595070699 Type: 


Copyright:  2004

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Arche Books
Grandfather's Song

A Lenape Indian story come to life. Talking Coyote's quest to reunite the native peoples of the world with their past

Chapter 1 March (Buffalo Calves Drop Moon), 2002 The light from the bedside clock’s red numbers gave a serene look to Talking Coyote’s face as he slept. His breathing, slow and regular, was about to change. Under closed lids his eyes started to jump frantically showing he was in deep REM sleep, dreaming. “Kales ta, N’gsisak, Kales ta. (Listen, my son, listen).” Talking Coyote found himself in a forest watching a scene unfold before him, but it looked as if he were looking through a thousand tiny prisms. His brain refused to register the multitude of duplicate images that caused a sense of vertigo. His body had shifted shape into that of a spider, something he had never done before. The spider moved in its web to get a better look at the commotion. Shifting shape again, he now became one with a large bear-like creature he had never seen before. The smell of gunpowder hung in the air and burned the creature Xinkwelenowak’s nostrils almost as much as the fiery pain in his left thigh. “Alapsi (hurry up),” he said to the deer, otter, and muskrat in front of him. “Up the hill toward the cave. You will be safe there.” He herded the animals up a well-used trail that had deepened the past few weeks from heavy use. Tracks from all types of animals were stamped into the packed earth, one on top of the other. Father! It hurts, I can feel his pain, it hurts to walk… Father? Behind Xinkwelenowak was the sound of two men crashing through the forest. Looking back, he heard one cussing aloud. “Pigor, did you see the size of that bear?” The nearest man stopped to reload his muzzleloader and put a fresh load of powder in the flash pan of his gun. The man’s hands were shaky and more powder fell to the earth than went into the barrel of the gun. It took three tries to put the ramrod into the barrel to push his shot home. Confused about what he was seeing, Talking Coyote sensed the image of an old man with red hair and a red head wrap swim into his consciousness. “Kales ta, N’gsisak (Listen my son). It is for you to see this and no other.” He speaks Lenape? He is not Indian, yet calls me his son in our language. Through the wisps of gunpowder smoke the scene focused back to the two men. The other man shouted back, “I think you wounded him good, Curt. I see blood on the trail. They are heading up to that cave!” Pigor stopped and sucked in a lung full of air. Talking Coyote could see the second man through a thousand little prisms, and he had returned to the spider. The second man was ugly, missing a nose and wearing leather clothing caked with what looked like dried blood and animal remains. The man’s breath wafted by the spider web; the stink of his breath and blood-stained buckskins made the spider’s mandibles start to twitch, confusing the smell with a near-by meal. Blood, sweat and fear were what he smelled coming from this man. I can smell his fear, Father. Talking Coyote’s vision changed back to looking at the old man with red hair. “The White man has been killing the animals for over the past hundred winters and they do not know what it is to stop. We tried to stop them, only to be killed for our scalps. The balance of nature has turned and the animals turned to Xinkwelenowak to protect them. He had helped them in the past and is now their only hope, N’gsisak.” Who are you? Why do you speak to me? “Kales ta, you are to see this that has happened. Who I am does not matter. What you see is what matters.” The spider watched as Xinkwelenowak herded the animals he was protecting to the shelter of the cave. “Quickly, into the cave. Go through the hole in the floor and do not look back.” The spider watched Xinkwelenowak turn aside at the cave entrance and jump into the bush. The spider crawled to the top of his web to see Xinkwelenowak working his way around the opening of the cave to about thirty feet above the entrance; there the creature disappeared. Feeling the vibrations of his voice coming through the spider web, Talking Coyote heard the man with no nose yelling to his mate. “I don’t like it mate. I didn’t sign up to chase a crazed wounded bear into a cave.” From this angle, Talking Coyote could see the man with no nose was also missing his right ear. Talking Coyote watched the man called Curt follow the blood trail from the wounded creature. Curt approached the cave with his musket ready. As the man drew close to the cave, he searched to the right for a sign of the blood trail. Talking Coyote watched Xinkwelenowak throw a boulder down the hill. It looked as if Talking Coyote were watching the boulder in slow motion, viewed through a kaleidoscope. Thousands of images of the rock appeared on its second bounce as the boulder arched down toward Curt. The smoke shifted again and Talking Coyote had left the spider behind. He was now seeing the world from inside the man named Curt. He knew Xinkwelenowak was above him and he looked up to see death coming. When it hit, Talking Coyote’s breath shot out of his lungs with so much force blood was mixed in it. He was dying along with the man named Curt. The last thing he saw was the spray of blood mixed with air floating in front of his eyes, settling on the rock that pinned him against a maple tree. Surprised to be alive, Talking Coyote now shifted into the body of a toad. Breathing deeply, the toad’s neck expanded and filled with air. He was in the cave the animals had run into earlier. The cave was empty except for Xinkwelenowak standing at the entrance. He was yelling to the man with no nose, “From this day forever, you will not kill another of my brothers or sisters. We will leave you to your death.” Then, Xinkwelenowak yelled at the retreating hump of meat running away, “You have no souls. You are not human beings!”   

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Reader Reviews for "Grandfather's Song"

Reviewed by Michael Guy 2/19/2011
"The balance of nature has turned and the animals turned to Xinkwelenowak to protect them...“From this day forever, you will not kill another of my brothers or sisters. We will leave you to your death.” Then, Xinkwelenowak yelled at the retreating hump of meat running away, “You have no souls. You are not human beings!”

Such powerful writing; I have added this book to my "eventual shopping list" - I only wish there was one protecting today's animals, especially the Bison and Wolves. The "Clovis White-trash people gone killing without use or discrimination, but there is one who will eventual protect His creation, the Great Spirit made all. When the dust and smoke clears from the comet or asteroid strike, I believe the Native American will be the only one capable of living again in harmony with the Earth mother. White man's days are numbered.

I know I'm white this time around but at the risk of you thinking I'm crazy I know I've lived in many past incarnations as Native American. They had the only sane religion: "Live in Harmony with the Earth; take only what you need, give back much." But I rant Chief Joseph said: "It does not take many words to speak the Truth."

I don't know too much about the Lenape Indian tribe, I enjoyed the culture and music of many others, Shawnee, Navajo, Sioux. Where can I learn more?

Best in writing, Michael Guy pianist/composer
Reviewed by Sage Sweetwater 6/21/2006
Jake George is a true Native American storyteller. Traditionally, storytelling is one of the most cherished means of instruction for Native Americans throughout this continent, past and present.

'Grandfather's Song' is versed in ancient knowledge and Jake George has given us a gift on behalf of all Native Americans. He does his Lenape heritage proud and it speaks on the pages of 'Grandfather's Song.'

My question, after reading 'Grandfather's Song' is "how can we give back to Mother Earth to repay the damages done her?" (There has come a time when ancient Native ideas are ready to be acted is that time...Sage Sweetwater)

'Grandfather's Song' is the beginning of a journey of recovery and a powerful voice from Jake George from the native homeland.

Well done, Jake! It is an honor to be in your company. I wish you much success and the passing on of your natural storytelling to future generations for the winds of renewal.

~Sage Sweetwater, firebrand lesbian novelist, author of The Buckskin Skirt Oar Traveler and From The Convent To The Rawhide: The Saga of Sadie Cade And Vi Montana~
Reviewed by Chrissy McVay 12/21/2005
This is a wonderful story that brings a Lenape Legend to the surface and warns humanity that if they don't heed nature's warning, they may 'reep what they sow'. This is a tale with great vision!
Chrissy K. McVay

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