Raven was happy as she awoke from her deam. It was good to be back and see Wolf and Turtle and all of her other friends.
She told them about her most recent dream, where she had seen human children playing in bright light. They lived in a land of mighty mountains and majestic rivers. How the children, after a long enjoyable day of games and adventures, lay down to sleep at night with thick warm blankets in wonderful large wooden longhouses. Within these sturdy homes, a crackling fire would be burning giving comfort to all while nearby wise elders told stories of bravery and humbleness.
All of Raven`s friends were amazed by what they heard from her. None of them had any dreams that they could remember and they could bareley imagine these wondrous things she spoke of as where they lived was nothing. There was nothing at all. Raven spoke of light but they really did not know what light was expect what their dreaming friend told them from her stories. In many of her other dreams, she spoke of things called water and wind, fire and ice. What was a mountain they wondered? They knew none of these things as everything was empty, silent and dark where they lived.
All of Raven`s friends were there in the world of Nothing. Every insect, stone, animal, plant and bird was amongst them and they felt each other and could hear each other`s thoughts and joys but that was all.
Actually as wondrous as these dream images were they seemed to trouble some of Raven`s friends. Bear, Whale and Dragonfly and a few others felt a bit uneasy about her dream stories as they were quite comfortable where they were in the world of Nothing and somehow they sensed if they continued to listen something would change their contentedness.
Nevertheless, each time Raven woke, someone like Badger, Robin or Granite would ask what she had dreamt and all would gather in a great circle in the world of no light nor sound and listen to the beautiful things of her dream travels. This latest gathering had again something new and exciting to hear.
She told slowly in her deep voice of a huge roundhouse built with many posts and beams of massive cedar trees where a multitude of people and children stood and danced around a living flaming fire. The center of the building was open to above where Raven saw endless numbers of shining sparkling spots of light studding a dark blue eternal sky. It was magically wonderful! The crackling sound of the glowing fire and the smell of its circling smoke made her extremely happy. All of Raven`s friends waited in high anticipation and awe for her to continue with her stories of impossible things that they knew nothing of in their realm of silence and shadows.
Raven spoke further of her dream. She told of how all people, old, young, women and men, babies cradled by loving mothers danced in one direction around the leaping fire. Between the people and flames stood a lone figure. A tiny ancient grandmother in a beautiful full-length cloak of glistening feathers. Grandmother held a painted drum with which she slowly and rhythmically drummed a beat. She spoke to all her children saying that she would sing a Medicine Song of health and humbleness and reminded all of her children never to forget what she sang to them. She then started to sing with the most beautiful voice a simple yet powerful tune :
Uuh-hu uuh-hu uuh-hu.
At first, all the people slowly followed the rhythm of Grandmother`s song but with each circling of the great fire, they moved a little faster and started to dance and spin in circles of their own, making spirals and wave patterns as they sped around the fire to the beat of Grandmother`s drum. Soon the speed of the dance was accelerating faster and faster. With each new turn of her many children, the mighty fire grew brighter and leaped higher and everyone became a part of Grandmother`s breathing song. The great ceremonial house was aglow with the brightest firelight and the sound of the song thundered as tiny Grandmother stood still in the middle by the fire in her chief`s long cape of mirror-like black feathers chanting her song
Uuh-hu uuh-hu uuh-hu
When Raven thought she could hear and see no more of this dream vision she woke with a start and was again at home with her friends where nothing was.
Her friends were amazed and dumbstruck by her dream story. Lynx, who usually knew most secrets was unable to mutter a thought and Marmot praised Raven`s vision. Salmon and Eagle wondered aloud why Raven was given such fantastic images to share with her friends. All in the circle started to chatter and discuss Raven`s dream. It was Coyote who made the suggestion that perhaps they too could start their own dance and Raven would be kind enough to sing the song that Grandmother had sung in the dream they would for sure all have fun.
There was no drum in the world of Nothing but Whale agreed to flap his tremendous tail fin to the beat of Raven`s singing.
Everyone was excited and even though there was no fire they felt quite content and besides none really knew what fire was as only Raven had seen it in her dream. So they all made a great circle again with Hummingbird and Wild Rose leading all the friends slowly in the same direction as Raven sang Grandmother`s dream song :
Uuh-hu uuh-hu uuh-hu
Pebble and Moose giggled as the circle started to move and most thought it was the greatest fun they had had in a very long time. They also started to sing along with Raven and soon Puma with his long tail was spinning to the beat of Whale`s tremendous tail fin. Deer and Hare lept through the air in joy.
It wasn`t long before all were moving faster and each one was dancing in their own pattern just as the people had done in Raven`s dream. Frog hopped as Snake slithered rhythmic waves. Boulder rolled as Grass bowed gracefully. Everyone was elated. This was more than just fun, this was the most wonderful experience and sensation any of them had ever lived through. At first, barely anyone noticed but as they all danced faster and faster in their great ring of friends something none had seen before but Raven in her dream started to appear and grow in their midst. As each time the circle was completed the center grew brighter and lighter. Raven recognized it from her dream as the fire in the center of the great ceremonial house.
All of her friends were astonished and not only could they see the amazing light grow brighter and brighter they could also see each other. They also felt the warmth of the light in their center and realized that in the world of Nothing it had always been cold.
Otter always thought he was swift and strong but when he saw the size of Bear for the first time in the light or the length of Elk`s legs he felt quite humble. Everyone was astonished at how each of them looked and they continued ti dance and sing as the endless light in the center grew and grew. It seemed like the light was almost touching all the friends and the sound was deafening from the beat of Whale`s tail and Raven`s dream song. Raven thought, as all the others did, perhaps it would end like in her dream and they would all wake up with a start from this living dream.
As they all had the same thought, different from that which happened in Raven`s dream, there was a terrific clap of thunder and the light was so bright that it totally engulfed them all and each was blinded.
The sound was beyond anything conceivable. It was the first Falcon who came to his senses and saw in the light a shape forming and soon all of Raven`s friends could see the most beautiful being amongst them shining in the heart of their circle.
It was Thunderbird, stretching her magnificent wings of light and rainbow flames and sounding thunder that was heard throughout all the tribes. In her chest was Grandmother`s mask : young and old, wise and smiling, singing her song of creation.
Thanks and awe-filled each friend as they watched her rise into the darkness above. Wherever Thunderbird flew she left a tail of stars in her wake dancing in spirals and circles just as all the people had done in Raven`s dream.
All the creatures had the uncontrollable desire to follow her and as they could now see Thunderbird`s lit path of creation which made all the worlds visible, each of Raven`s friends decided to settle where they loved it most.
Whale dove into the deepest ocean while Eagle felt just at home on the highest mountain peak.
Each one used their gift of life to help their old friends. Fly gave herself to Spider, Spider to Robin, Robin to Wild Cat and so on and on.
Mouse and Fox burrowed into the earth, Otter hunted Salmon in the streams and rivers while Lynx found her lair amongst the rocks and roots in the depths of the dark green forest.
Each found their beloved home. Raven was never sure where she belonged or felt best, tundra or woods, coast or mountain.
Often she went to visit those people she had seen in her dream so long ago. Sometimes she watched the children running through the tall green grass in summer or visited them in their dreams in winter where warm blankets and bright fires kept them safe.
Raven especially liked to see it when Grandmother would sing the Medicine Song to the children or tell them stories of Tulugaqs Dream.
Uuh-hu uuh-hu uuh-hu.