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GIFTS OF THE GREAT SPIRIT
containing all winners of the
2011 WHITE BUFFALO NATIVE AMERICAN POET LAUREATE CONTEST
NAME THE CHIEF CHALLENGE.
Scroll down for the winners.
DR. CHARLES A. STONE
WHITE BUFFALO NATIVE AMERICAN POET LAUREATE CONTEST WINNER
Dr. Charles A. Stone of Austin,Tex. has been named winner of the 2011
White Buffalo Native American Poet Laureate Award for his poem
“Grandfather Cypress.” He is a retired medical Geneticist whose Native
American ancestry comes from both sides of the world. He joins prior
White Buffalo poets laureate Barbara Youngblood Carr (2009), and Dr.
Carl B. Reed (2010) as Honorary Chiefs of the White Buffalo Tribe.
He says, “My grandfather (a native of Norway) was of Sami
Indian ancestry (the Sami are the largest indigenous group in Europe--the
Laplanders). In this country, his family settled on land that has been on
again/off again part of the Oneida reservation in Northern Wisconsin and
three of my father’s brothers married into the Oneida/Menominee tribes.
"Thus I claim familial kinship with indigenous groups on both sides of
the Atlantic and spiritual connection with indigenous people everywhere.
Sufficient ties to listen to the Great Spirit. . . ”
His mother, an avid reader of Northwest Indian literature, gave him his middle name in honor of Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce.
WINNER OF 2011 WHITE BUFFALO NATIVE AMERICAN POET LAUREATE AWARD
The spirits of my ancestors
splash across the walking stones
of many rivers and whisper to me
of painted horses that run free
across the plains of the setting sun.
They call to me from the smoke
of campfires to forsake the dark,
to join them in the ghost dance
of those who have known the earth
and now hide behind curtains of clouds.
I sing to them that I will join the dancing
when I am set free by the Great Spirit,
when my limbs are supple again
and I can pull free from the soil
that holds me to this world of living.
Until then, I must dwell within the bark
of this cypress tree to protect my grandson
whose fresh eyes do not see the dangers
as he plays at the edge of tomorrow and
wanders among the animals of the forest.
The time I spend here is good for my soul.
I get to see my grandson grow as I saw
my own son become a man and I learn
about the winds that bend my boughs
and seasons that cause my leaves to drop.
It is a time to make peace with demons
who caused me to be impatient with life
and learn the ways of the spirit world
before I become one with them and join
their evening chase for painted horses.
Dr. Charles A. Stone
. . . MORE WINNERS OF SECOND WHITE BUFFALO NATIVE AMERICAN AWARDS
Totals of the 2011 contest included income of $330 from 33 poets for 82
poems and one $20 contribution. One-third ($110) went
to the 1st Place winner, 1/3 was split among other winners, and 1/3 will
go toward production of future White Buffalo projects. The quality
of entries inspired the judges to add 3rd and 4th place categories:
2nd Place: White Buffalo Calf Award ($30)
Ella Cather-Davis, New Richmond, Ohio for “The Four Winds’ Song”;
Hilda F. Wales, Albuquerque, New Mexico for “Familiar Path”.
3rd Place: White Buffalo Peace Pipe Award ($15)
Barbara Youngblood Carr, Austin, Texas for “Measurements”;
Rose Klix, Johnson City, Tennessee for “Daughter of Selu”.
4th Place: Chief’s Choice Award ($5)
Sharmagne Leland-St. John, Los Angeles, California for “I Will Dance for You”;
Ron Ballard, Hagerstown, Maryland for “Cherokee”;
Neal Whitman, Pacific Grove, California for “The Secret of the Esselen”;
Carol Dee Meeks, Tulsa, Oklahoma for "As Tradition Unfolds"
Several Online Awards were also given. View them on
Thanks to all poets who made the 2nd
Annual White Buffalo Native American Poet Laureate Contest a success.
In the spirit of the Great Spirit: Aho!