Ceremony to Stop the TMX Pipeline

As the day awakens, this article transported me back to other times of celebrations to stop a pipeline. I’ve witnessed and felt the power of prayer as we’ve worked to protect Mother Earth and the water from the Black Snake.

I believe I will soon be led to tell my stories, but today wanted to write about the Secwepemc peoples’ recent ceremonies in opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline (TMX).

I found Kamloops, where this ceremony was held, is in British Columbia.

The pipeline is supposed to take crude oil from Alberta to the British Columbia coast.

One issue that caught my attention is the planned construction of the pipeline under the Thompson River. One of the main points of contention about the Dakota Access Pipeline was building it under the Missouri River.

A group of Secwepemc people held a canoe and kayak ceremony Saturday morning in Kamloops in opposition to the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project drilling under the Thompson River.

The journey began at Adams Lake and the group kayaked and canoed their way to the Mission Flats area for a potluck dinner and games.

“Families from our Secwepemc Nation came together for the No TMX Canoe and Kayak Journey today to be in ceremony and offer prayers and protection for our clean water and our wild salmon,” says Anushka Nagji, a Secwepemc activist.

“The Canadian Federal government’s TMX Pipeline and their ongoing occupation of our territories is encroaching on our consistent presence and land usage in this area, where we fish, gather medicines, hunt and get our families together since time immemorial. Short term gain in jobs is long term loss in the integrity and dignity of our territories and our children’s futures and we do not consent to that,” she adds.

Construction in this area has already been delayed by a week, and the group says they will continue to try and have it pushed back further by asserting sovereignty and usage in Secwepemc territory.

“A stop-work order must be issued as the pipeline construction is actively destroying pit house and significant cultural sites along the river on Mission Flats Road and in Kenna Cartwright Park,” adds Nagji. “As well as threatening the wild salmon returning home in a year when the salmon count is the lowest it has been in recorded history.”

The Secwepemc people say they observed the TMX Pipeline Corporation working overtime on Thursday, preparing to drill under the Thompson River without the consent of the Secwepemc Nation.

CEREMONY TO STOP A PIPELINE By Amandalina Letterio, Castanet. Resist, September 29, 2020

Reading about the potential impact on the wild salmon returning home reminded me of a video that included the words and music of Nahko Bear about Run4Salmon. The videos and lyrics of the three songs used in the video can be found below.

Run4Salmon

Winnemem Wintu Chief Caleen Sisk and a collective of Indigenous women, activists, and allies are organizing the Run 4 Salmon, a 300-mile trek that follows the historical journey of the salmon from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to the Winnemem (McCloud River) to raise awareness about the policies threatening our waters, our fish, and indigenous lifeways. It’s a dire time in California for wild chinook salmon (Nur) – climate change, giant dam projects and draining rivers for Big Ag irrigation threaten the survival of the keystone keepers of our waters. Salmon bring essential nutrients to the waterways, forests, and lands. However, since the Shasta Dam was built 75 years ago, the salmon have been unable to return to their home waters in the Winnemem’s ancestral watershed. Now, the Winnemem Wintu Tribe is working on a plan to bring the genetic descendants of their salmon from New Zealand back to their home waters.

This prayerful journey raises awareness about the importance of protecting our waters, restoring our salmon runs and revitalizing our indigenous lifeways.

Run4Salmon



“The Wolves Have Returned” Nahko and Medicine for the People
(feat. Leah Song, Trevor Hall & Xavier Rudd)

[Nahko Bear:]
I’m cutting the bad fruit off of my tree to
Lighten my load and grow me tall
Just like my dogma, this fire pit mantra
Covered in ashes, now take me home
Shedding my antlers and making up answers
To the mystery of nature, so reach for the sun
Spruce tips and cedars now free up them rivers
The salmon will run, no dam can hold
Uniting the nations, it’s gonna take some patience
So unzip your sheepskin, the wolves have returned
(Ah-ooooo)
The wolves have returned
(Ah-ooooo)

[Trevor Hall:]
I call to the spirit, brother I hear it
Union of all things, like words on the sky
I read the totems, my ancestors wrote ’em
Now I sit patient, as I wait on the tribe
This runs through all things, like thunder and lightning
Song everlasting, well always I learn
Pull off the old skin, now we are kindred
Open and listen, the wolves have returned
(Ah-ooooo)
The wolves have returned
(Ah-ooooo)

[Xavier Rudd:]
So channel the old ones, with each waking new sun
Walk with your totem, conditions unsaid
Walk from the mystery, a love where you feeling
Rough up protection, a spear in your hand
In light of our dreaming, never meant to be easy
Sometimes there’ll be water, sometimes you’ll be dry
Footprints in tandem, in this ancient sandstone
Grandmothers reside, and I’ll be by your side
Oh, I will be by your side
Grandmother, I will be your side, oh

[Leah Song:]
Part of creation is making a statement
You can’t escape it, she’s coming for you
If it was up to me, I’d teach that the lonely
This is just part of the courage it takes
Maybe it’s the music, it’s moving right through us
All of the songs that will outlive me
I’m running the song lines, I’m wrapping my prayer ties
Preserving the old way, my wolf has returned
(Ah-ooooo)
My wolf has returned, oh
(Ah-ooooo)

[Nahko Bear:]
Go on and carry your flag, carry your flag, I got your back
Go on and carry your flag, carry your flag, I got your back

[All:]
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag, carry your flag
Carry your flag


“Runner” Nahko and Medicine for the People

I am a runner
Running from nothing
All things behind me
And all good things ahead
I am another kind of lover
Follow them dragonflies and lead me to the
Sunrise in the morning
Tides in the evening

Lay me down, yeah, lay me down
And teach me one of them harder lessons
Lay me down
Yeah, lay me down
And kiss me softly, kiss me softly
In all of them places that you know me best

Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah
Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah

I can be loyal, return the honor
And I’ll put my family first
But you must earn your keep
This love has no strings
No leash, no clipped wings
Stronger than most things
It is noble by nature
I want no promises
Just some logged hours

Lay me down, oh lay me down
And maybe an open mind will open mine
Oh lay me down, lay me down
And kiss me softly, kiss me softly
In all of them places that you know me best

Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah
Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah

Return, return, return
To all them places that you learn
Return, return, return
All them places that you learn

Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah
Whoa-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
Whoa-oh-oh-oh, yeah

Kiss me softly, kiss me softly
In all of them places that you know me best
Yeah
Kiss me softly, kiss me softly
In all of them places that you know me best
Yeah

From the Waipi’o Valley
Peakin’ on tetons
Follow the Klamath
To the basin of my soul
Shinin’ on shasta
Those holy head waters
Dear old Columbia, your gorgeous sparkling eyes
Creators callin’, she’s got my number
Lay me down, lay me down
And where be my outlaws?
Well, rest in reason
Lay me down, yeah lay me down
Cause old things never die
You know as well as I
We will return, we will return


“Directions” Nahko and Medicine for the People
(feat. Joseph)

For the West
For the North
For the East
For the South

Grandfather, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now
Grandmother, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now

For the West (hmm)
For the North (hmm)
For the East (hmm)
For the South (hmm)

Grandfather, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now
Grandmother, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now

For the West (hmm)
For the North (hmm)
For the East (hmm)
For the South (hmm)

Grandfather, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now
Grandmother, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now

HOKA!

For the West (ooo)
For the North (ooo)
For the East (ooo)
For the South (ooo)

Grandfather, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now
Grandmother, I’m calling on you
Need your guidance now

This entry was posted in #NDAPL, decolonize, Indigenous, Native Americans, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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