rowenwhite rowenwhite

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Rowen White  Indigenous seed steward •Mohawk• Haudenosaunee • I weave stories of ancestral foods, culture and indigenous seed 🔸 Indigenous Seedkeepers Network 🔸

Huitlacoche found in the popcorn harvest, a delightful little surprise! #cornmushroom #indigenous #delicacy #autumn #harvest #native #food

Current scene in front of the living room bookshelves...every corner of the house has piles of food tucked away...I like to let the beans air out in open vessels and really full dry before putting them in airtight storage containers. I'm winnowing more today and tomorrow so there will be more to come... They lovingly sing us their seedsongs for the next few weeks, blessing our home with their melodies of remembrance and resilience. #fullhouse #harvest #season #abundance #autumn #seedsongs

The Universe is our Holy Book ( excerpt by Jack Forbes) "The Earth our Genesis
The Sky our sacred scroll
The Animals our teachers
The Mountains our prophets
The Winds our equations
The Birds our prayers
The Flowers our miracle The Sun our source The Moon our messenger The Waters our testaments The World our study The Great Mystery our Grandfather and Grandmother, indeed our Beginning and our End. And it is said that our Garden of Eden is Elami hakimik which is the entire world and we have never been expelled from it for, in the magic garden of the Creator we are living still with all of our relatives as the old ones say, the four-leggeds the winged ones of the air and the creatures of the waters. The philosopher-teachers of this Native America, The American philosophers, tell us, above all, they say, we must be relative-like with the Universe and with all of the other creatures which are, together, our Sacred Family. And our Mother and Grandmother is the Earth upon which we graze upon whose breast, it is said, we suckle all of our lives never being weaned And our Father is the male power, coming from the Grandfather- side of the Great Mystery nourishing us with the colossal immensity of the Sky, of the Sun, still also of male rain, without which the Earth could feed us not and all would die. And the Old Ones say: look outward seriously look inward intently look outward carefully look inward diligently look outward respectfully look inward humbly The Old Ones say outward is inward to the heart and inward is outward to the center because for us there are no absolute boundaries no borders no environments no outside no inside no dualisms no single body no non-body We don’t stop at our eyes We don’t begin at our skin We don’t end at our smell We don’t start at our sounds I can lose my legs and go on living I can lose my eyes and go on living I can lose my ears and go on living I can lose my hair my nose my hands my arms and go on living but if I lose the water I die If I lose the air I die If I lose the Sun I die If I lose the plants and animals I die For all of these things are more a part of me more essential to my being than is that which I call “my body.”

We used this beautiful Farina de Mais Biancoperla, which is a white 8 row Flint corn grown outside of Venice to make a lovely polenta to accompany the salted and roasted tomatoes I made this afternoon. This Venetian Flint corn is likely a descendent of our Haudenosaunee white Flint corn, brought by colonists and traders from the Northeast US across the Atlantic several centuries ago, where it took root in the agricultural and culinary traditions in Northern Italy. I love being able to enjoy the unique and subtle flavor and texture of this corn, and experiencing the familiarity of such flavors from my own ancestral seeds I continue to grow. It never ceases to amaze me how Corn Mother has nourished so many people the world over, following so many trade routes, across borders,oceans, mountain ranges to continually inspire farmers and cooks alike with her benevolence and resilience. #corn #mother #blessings #whiteflint #italian #polenta

Today I am savoring some of the flavors, the terrior, of the Italian coast of the Adriatic Sea...sprinkling precious pinches of this artisanal sea salt on fresh homegrown tomatoes, salt which I purchased from an older couple while in Italy at the Terra Madre celebration. The origins of this particular salt goes back generations and generations...from the Cervia saltworks, which were already active during Roman times, over the centuries they expanded so much that in 1698 the inhabitants were forced to rebuild their village a few kilometers further away. In 1959 ownership passed to the state, and the 144 multiple-harvest basins were combined into one single basin, from which the salt was harvested mechanically once a year. This resulted in the loss of the traditional method: Each salter used to divide their harvesting basin into five small sections, and every day they would collect the salt from one section. This was the only way to prevent the formation of more bitter salts, which required more time for crystallization and higher concentrations. In 1989, some of the salters who had worked in the Cervia saltworks helped to form the Civiltà Salinara cultural association, with the aim of creating a museum of salt-production traditions—now housed in an old salt warehouse—and to run the small basin number 89, the Camillone salt pan, according to traditional methods. As well as protecting the association, in the future the Presidium also wants to start managing other basins using the traditional multiple-harvest system. 
Thankful for all those who are working to reclaim food traditions that embody relationship and loving care; carefully tending ancestral memory and artisanal food craft for the generations to come. Grateful to have a little cloth sack of this salt to savor as the blessings from our trip to Italy continue to bless our palettes and plates. #artisinal #sea #salt #slowfood #italy #homegrown #tomatoes

This stunning clay comal made it safely back to our home from my trip to Oaxaca! I can't wait to make a fresh batch of corn tortillas on this beauty. #clay #comal #tortilla #hearth #fromseedtotable

I light candles and sing to my ancestors tonight, as the sun sets orange in the west...I sing to them so I can feel their love coursing in my blood, feel their warmth in the very marrow of my bones. My body is a cartography of stories, of lives lived, of people asking not to be forgotten.
Calling in the voices of all the strong women who came before me, who laid this path for me to follow. Those ones who worked so hard so that I might have this breath, these wild rivers of blood flowing through my veins. I feel them closely when I am doing the simple things, carrying up the firewood, gathering the eggs, stirring the saucepot, counting stitches on my needles, writing little notes to myself that perhaps will be read by some future curious eyes. I make renewed commitment through my hands, my heart, my voice and my mind to make my life an honoring song for all those who came before and all those whose faces and names I will not know who will know me as an ancestor, who grant me courage cultivate this garden of work that makes me rise in the morning with re-invigorated purpose for those yet to come. May we leave them with good nourishing food to eat and the embodied wisdom of how to prepare meals with love, and beautiful stories to fall asleep to, and clean water to drink, and a deeper understanding of relationship and connectivity that will assist them as they make a similar commitment to their descendants. We do not forget the threads that connect us, that weave us together on the grand loom of time. #ancestors #honoring #indigenous #resilience #dayofthedead

Freshly winnowed Haricot Rouge du Burkino Faso cowpeas. These gems have been blessing our gardens for years..I can sing their praises for days and days.....they thrive with little water, they grow in marginal soils and enrich the Earth for the next season, they are easy to pick, you can eat them fresh as green beans or dry as soup beans, they are satisfying to thresh and winnow and they are immensely generous, multiplying exponentially from a small handful of seeds. There's nothing that makes me more content then running my hands through a basket of seeds, sleek and vibrant...all their little luminous white bellybuttons reminding me of their maternal connection to the great Divine force that grew us all in our Mother's wombs. #abundance #resilience #seedsongs #homegrown #nourishment

Connecting kinship routes, from Northeast to Southwest. Honored to be in the presence of good men last weekend, ones who take care of their communities and nations, who think ahead 7 generations with all they do. I was so grateful to spend time with my seed elder Steve McComber at Taos Pueblo, renewing our commitment to keep the indigenous trade routes alive and well worn. #indigenous #resilience #native #kinship #routes

We have three different types of oak on the land we steward here; Black oak, tan oak and live oak. These live oak acorns are a delight to the eye, bright yellow and green, dropping down in massive numbers this season. We keep gathering them as they fall, it's a lovely way to look closely at the ground under our footpaths and feet, I always notice how many insects and spiders there are crossings paths with us that we rarely take time to acknowledge or greet unless we are bent low in the forest, gathering beautiful acorns. Thankful for this time in gratitude for the benevolence of the oaks. #acorn #harvest #indigenous #resilience #gathering #foodeverywhere

For those of you who have heavy hearts, with despair of what is happening in the violence, loneliness and sadness of perceived disconnection, across our beautiful Mother Earth... the wise words of Issac Murdoch gave me courage this morning. "Live your life to the fullest and enjoy all the beauty that surrounds you. Love everything. We are in a massive climate crisis and world wide ecological collapse, so pray hard. The time is now to stand strong and unite for all life on the planet.

There is no need to panic.

Be a student of the land and sky. Apprentice from the great powers of the universe and welcome the stars to be a part of your family. Close your eyes and dream. Learn the old ways. Simple is best.

Become a beautiful force of nature and dedicate your entire everything to the earth. Use all your gifts and use them well. Take the time to master your skills and be proud of them.

Never surrender or conform to the idea that the system will change for you. It won't. You can create a better everything by doing something different. Be who you really are and Rise strong. You are the medicine." ❤️ #SacredEarth

Heading home after a wonderful time at Taos Pueblo. These golden cottonwoods, aflame with their gorgeous song bid me farewell. I'm longing for home, to get back to my hands in the Earth, to threshing and winnowing seeds and all the good work that will need to be be done ahead of the winter rains coming. What a dynamic week, traveling the kinship routes of maíz, from Oaxaca to the Pueblos...I feel blessed to follow the nourishing pollen path that the seeds lay out for me to follow. I am forever humbled and grateful for their wisdom and guidance, for continuing to grow me into a woman who understands who she is and my responsibilities to be a responsible descendent and future ancestor, to perhaps someday be able to offer my children and future generations a bundle heavy with nourishment and the stories and seeds they will need to uphold their agreements as they walk in this world. #golden #cottonwood #blessings #indigenous #resilience #kinship #routes #taos #newmexico

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