Tag Archives: indigenous identity

Revolutionary Art: “Call Me Human”

by Lyla Johnston, ’12

Listen to her poem here:

“Call Me Human”

from birth we etch these lines
engrave them in your mind
by the rockets red glare
the bombs bursting mid air
the war it begins
to make the imaginary country
as real as your skin.

America does not exist
It’s an idea men have obsessed over since 1776.

an excuse we use to manifest a reality that
destroyed the destiny of Native civilization. Continue reading

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Revolutionary Art: “Wake Up Time”

by Lyla Johnston, ’12

This is a poetic translation of the Dine (Navajo) word, “Hozho.” There is no direct translation into English, but perhaps a close one would be: ‘attaining harmony with the exquisite song of the earth.’ My tribe, the Dine (Navajo) Nation, holds within its language certain conceptual keys and solutions for the activist’s dilemma. Through Bikeh Hozho (The Beauty Way) the Dine people lived and thrived for thousands of years without jails, judges, or social hierarchies. It is through the appreciation of the divine design of creation that we found peace within our communities. As an anthropology major I have found that, through the study of indigenous culture, we can uncover social tools and cultural mechanisms that have already been invented and perfected over thousands of years of evolution that foster the exchange of unconditional love. With the translation of a single word from Dine Bizaad (The Navajo Language) I hope to show how the Dine people can offer us ways of being healthy and happy activists. Continue reading

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