Somewhere there is a picture of myself and my brother sitting on the National Park momument at the entrance to Effigy Mounds in Harper's Ferry, IA. There is also a comment I wrote beneath a friends instagram picture of the mounds as depicted on the quarter, with my friend wondering what they were exactly. There are many emails I've written to friends who would be in the area telling them to go and check them out. And today there is this post, where I pay all my respects to the indigenous people who created the mounds and sit in awe of their spiritual longevity.
Native culture is still very present in the Midwest where I grew up and we had access to a number of very sacred places. Effigy Mounds stand out in particular to me for it's creative expression at the grave, it's inspiring appreciation of the land and animals by creating stunningly perfect designs that were plotted out without any aerial technology to assist in viewing it from above.
I've been working for a year and a half on a conservation burial project that will allow people to have a natural buried in state parks. We are working on ways to create new rituals that are healing and sacred, respectful to the earth and each other. I am constantly thinking about the mound builders of the Midwest and their visions to mark a sacred space with shapes that represent protectors, providers and guides. I love the idea that the shape of the grave tells more of a story than the headstone and can be told for many generations to come.