Swallowed Sounds

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Has No Voice was a mystery to the Medicine People of her Tribe. She had never spoken. The long years of silence had convinced her family that she would never utter a word. The child heard and was able to communicate through hand signs, but everyone had lost hope that she would ever sing or raise her voice in thanksgiving during Ceremony.

It was certain that Has No Voice's childhood had been strange. She was born under a stand of willows where her mother had gone to bring her into the world. The first hours of her young life were fraught with horrible events when her Tribe's camp was raided by their nearest enemy's war party. Has No Voice's father found them and protected them, losing his life in the process.

One day, in her seventh winter of life, Has No Voice was taken ill. She had eaten some bad food and was retching. The Medicine Man was called. As Has No Voice felt her stomach convulse, a curious thing happened. Sounds came up with the rotten meal. More sounds came out of her as the astounded members of her family heard the cries of wounded and fearful people. The Holy Man smiled as he explained that as a newborn she had swallowed the sounds, knowing that if she cried, she and her mother would die. The stomachache had allowed her to throw up her fear and to heal.

Has No Voice earned a new name when she reclaimed her gift of speech: now she is called Has No Fear.

Twenty-third Meditation of the Sixth Moon
"Earth Medicine Ancestors' Ways of Harmony for Many Moons"
by Jamie Sams

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