Conceived with the wide sweep of the prairies in mind, this literary field guide is especially dedicated to the urban grasslands of Saskatoon, notably the Northeast and Small Swales. Enjoy exploring these inspiring landscapes in the company of some of the province’s most accomplished writers.
And then I hear a voice or is it voices? Is it the woman? The aspens (they do like to talk), those blazing stars, the harebells ringing, those butterflies fluttering by?
our days leap with a rich array of raw resonant prairie browns and sky blues
…they rose for me and the world was a wild winging honk-a-lonking, divine moment all full of geese.
Wise sage, we honour your millennia. What portent lies ahead?
the catbird, towhee, song
sparrow, she loved them all
as the sun crowned the east
I closed my eyes and found my voice
One prayer at a time we rise We are the Buffalo Nation.
..in their language so unlike our own. I have heard a bird laugh and one full of praise.
So Wisahkecahk never made it south but still, when migrating, geese fly in this same formation: as if still holding Wisahkecahk.
Imagine being married to one who animates the dead! Look, burying beetles have won the home lottery, he says.
…despite the animal’s casual ignoring of us, we were the ones on full alert.
You’ve never been to Swale
World yet even hemmed within your skittish days you sense it out there, holding its breath…
a hard light fills our dreams
its clamour smashes nest and shell
…the sweet-scented bedstraw,
the ascending bedstraw hawkmoth.
A sudden movement beyond the brush, a white-tail doe…
everywhere you look, careening from green to green, the world exhales mint
… her rest never adjusted to, the absence of wild singing…
For years on blistered feet the hikers have followed their hearts…
A garter snake knits up the ravelled sleeve of the world.
How can you not believe an animal who goes down headfirst into darkness?
I will always be connected to kikawînaw askiy wîscakasa that lives in her many forms and collectively lives and breathes as I do.
The teachings of a great horned owl underfeather found suspended on brome.
How loveliness attracts the kinds of exchanges that lead to more lovely things.
Blue grama grass, Bouteloua gracilis: a grandmother holds her ground.