Theme/Story ’12

In these lands, the first people of this place honor the yearly cycle of the Sacred Salmon as a core part of their relationship to the land and the divine, and their relationship to these creatures is a central part of their culture.

Salmon spawn in the pure headwaters of creeks and streams, and then transform their entire physiological system, morphing from freshwater fish into saltwater fish. In their new forms, they delve deep into the mysterious cold waters of the ocean, sometimes traveling tens of thousands of miles before hearing the call to come Home again.

Their return restores fertility to the land that would otherwise be lost downstream forever, and in this way, they nourish the entire watershed to which they return. The way to finding Home lies within their ability to listen to something hidden within their DNA and their psyches, which leads them to the ancestral home-waters of their lineage.

But the life-way of the salmon and the Salmon People has been brutalized by the effects of colonization and genocide.

Salmon populations struggle to survive in polluted, warm waters, with many of Empire’s tools creating serious challenges to the successful completion of their journey Home.

In many ways, the link between the people of the land, the fish, and the ecosystem at large have been broken.

And all the people suffer from the dehumanizing and earth-alienating effects of historical and continued colonization.

Now is the time to rewild ourselves, to remember our inherent indigenous relationship to land and place, and to dedicate our lives to right relationship to the Web of Life.

We believe that the salmon can lead us Home again – home to ourselves, and to the parts of our souls that have never lost their way in colonization and capitalism.

We believe that in re-membering the ways of the salmon — in our own ways, with our own songs, rites and ceremonies — we envelop ourselves in the powerful magic of reconnection that is so desperately needed at this time. We can ally ourselves with those who have never forgotten the Old Ways of this place, and all places connected.

We desire to co-create this magic of becoming salmon, knowing that it is a mysterious path for those of us who come from peoples that traveled here from other lands far away. This journey is a process of discovery and exploration, not a fairytale with easy fixes or linear narrative.

It is the magic of both the Here and Now, and also dream magic, water magic, prayer magic, and transformation.

* * * * *

In working this theme and this story, one desire that arose from our vision was to seed our camp as a whole, and particularly our rituals and paths, oriented around the most potent words from our visioning process:

  • Home
  • Portal
  • Prayer
  • Activation
  • Salmon
  • Council
  • Rewilding

* * * * *

We also offer, as a mystic text borne of the spirit of camp moving through us, the poem that came out of the visioning process as another seed for our rituals and magic:

The mind can cut through to new windows,
being present to silence:

Scars keep silent vigil.

All coming together now, everything together:
This prayer of yearning,
Home to the temple.

May you thrive in the emerging power of love,
Reflecting in an intricate web above.

Ignite the home fire,
Earth den of your own wild desires —

A creature under the stars.

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