Telling is brushing her long black hair. She is supple and smiling. I give her the golden bowl to drink from. She has forgiven me my long neglect. My heart pours out, rippling and dark as her hair. We have the bond of lake water between us, that dark drift, that winded lilt, that full sky equanimity.

We move together; my arm lifts, her arm lifts with me, close, like an echo, a drop shadow, lending depth and resonance to every move. And to stillness too. We are bound together. We make sense together. We are each the answer to the other’s question. Sisters. We are sisters.

We go together to see the grandmother. We take a bouquet of flowers and a feather, a small bouquet because flowers are scarce in this dry season. Indian paint brush, golden rod, a sprig of sage, a long grey goose feather. I let Telling present them because it was her knowing that gathered them. We sit together on the ground at the grandmother’s feet.

The grandmother laughs and claps her hands. “You three sisters,” she says. Three sisters. June Bug has joined us, her head in Telling’s lap, eyes to the sky. “You three dancing sisters.” The words are a sort of invocation, they lift us up and we dance. We dance in a circle around the grandmother. We dance as if there were no other purpose at all, but to dance. In a larger circle around us other people are dancing. Our dancing feeds their dancing. Their dancing feeds ours. Arms like ribbons, like lake weed blooming. We laugh and we dance.


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