Sunday, May 5, 2013

Medicine Man 1 Excerpt two

Excerpt 2 Medicine Man 1; The Chief of All Time

I spun around, refusing to get caught up in another
vision. I slammed the door shut. Those deer couldn’t be in
my yard. A chill came over me. The drums pounded in my
head. My medicine mark tingled. I touched the scar. How
was it the lines of it made up an artful design? Whirling at
the edges of memory, I seemed to remember it hadn’t always
been so. The harder I thought about it, the louder the drums
echoed--a howling wolf sung harmony.

The doorbell sounded. I jerked the door open. My
brother, Sam, stood on the other side. It so surprised me I
couldn’t say anything. He stared back at me with maniclooking

“You’re not going to help me,” he shouted, washing me
with the foul smell of consumed beer and whisky. He turned
and stepped off the porch.

“Sam, wait. You can’t drive like this.” I grabbed for his
arm, and he vanished. He hadn’t been there in the first place.

“Medicine Elk?”

Morning Dove stood in the doorway of the den dressed in
a long, tan buckskin tunic with very few fringes, over
matching pants. On her feet, she wore well-used moccasins
without design. She carried a rough cloth satchel over her
shoulder. How in the world did all of it fit in her backpack?
Reality seemed to have slipped away from me. Maybe a
car had hit me. Who truly knew what a person went through
while they were in a coma? The mind could imagine
anything. The only choice I had was to believe this reality, to
make my way through it and come out the other side sane
and alive. It took both the mind and body to heal a person
from severe trauma. The spirit needed to be treated as well. I
slammed the door shut. The drums died away.

My grandfather needed to go home, and Morning Dove
needed to go with him. I wanted her to stay--traditionalist or


“Look at her. Look at her, Running Deer. She stands in
your home. No one will stop you. Have her. The reward will
be all she possesses. The Power of the Great Spirit will be
yours to command. You will be as timeless as she is. Take

I pressed my eyes shut and compelled the voice of the elkman
to go away. What in the name of the spirits was wrong
with me?

Insanity. It seemed the only answer. Madness had sucked
my mind into its wake. Too many hours in the trauma unit
could do that. Everyone knew the risk of burnout. I should
have recognized it when I believed Morning Dove could heal

When did I lose touch with reality? Before the Life Flight
brought Morning Dove in? Or had it been earlier, at Lake
Side Park, when I first saw her? Could I be in the psychiatric
ward right now and not aware of it?

On the other side of the room, the patio door slid open.
The twittering of birds filled the room. Amazed, I looked
outside. Sunlight shone in bright rays through trees that
shouldn’t have been in my back yard. Sunshine? It was only
half past twelve a.m. A dog barked. Another answered it. On
the patio two mangy dogs, about the size of small huskies,
wagged tails and panted. Each dog wore a harness attached
to a loaded travois.

Morning Dove moved out of the house to stand in the
brilliant light. The dogs wiggled with contentment at her
touch. Shaking my head didn’t dispel this newest twist to my

“We will be late. Hurry.”

Filled with mischief, Morning Dove’s voice teased me as if
I were always tardy, or perhaps she knew how much I hated
being late.

“Come, boy, she’s not your bride yet. They won’t choose
you if you arrive after the council has met.” My grandfather said.

MMI: Chief of All Time is written in American Indian first person POV. S. R. Howen's choice of words creates a complex rhythm of thought drawing the reader through the story. This weaving is visualized in brilliant literary fiction, crossing genres, cultures & time. Howen crafted a masterpiece.

Tomarin 5 stars

I loved the ending as I cheered for better things to happen, and I would definitely be on the American Indian's side of things then, now and always.
I would suggest this book to everyone. It is entertaining, and thought provoking in a positive and enlightening way.

Colleen Bratley 5 stars

1 comment:

Debby said...

The excerpts are tantalizing but very confusing to me.
debby236 at gmail dot com