The photo above comes from a bulk email I got from Robert Mirabal's website. I thought this illustrates this time of year in New Mexico perfectly.
If you aren't familiar with Robert Mirabal, he is a contemporary Native American recording artist who is doing unbelievably wonderful music. Check out his websites as well as YouTube videos of his performances.
I first discovered him when I ran across a PBS telethon where they were showing his "Songs From A Painted Cave" performance. I wished then as I still do that I had a copy of this video...some day I will. At that time all my budget would allow was for me to purchase the CD which I almost wore out.
When we were in New Mexico in the fall of 2007 we visited the Taos Pueblo where I met his brother (I think) and member of his group. Dana bought be a flute and a copy of the newest CD called "In The Blood". I am listening to that CD even as I write.
After my heart attack I was given a plastic meter to blow in several times a day to help my lungs heal. After a few days of that I put it away and picked up the flute Dana had bought me. I hadn't had time to learn to use it and now during my recovery I had nothing but time. I wouldn't dare say that I can play it but with lots of practice I eventually learned to stop making it sound like a animal caught in a trap. I even learned to play "Amazing Grace"on it. I spent so much time in bed and the flute became a good companion as I spent many hours each day playing it.
And I will tell you in all honesty that I credit it with its part in my recovery. Unlike the sterile plastic meter that shouted "illness" my flute was made from a rich wood (the kinds escapes me now) with a beautiful glow to it. I learned to position the beautiful carved horse fetish on top for just the right sound and was surprised at what it took to train my fingers to cover the holes to get the right notes. My flute and my use of it is a living creative thing...like me.
I love my flute and am looking forward to purchasing another one on our next trip to the Pueblo.
As long as I'm talking about the Taos Pueblo I'll share a wish from my wish list with you. It is my wish that one day before I leave this good earth that I am able to be at the Taos Pueblo on Christmas Day as the sun sets to witness the Matachines Dance or Deer Dance. I have read about this for years, especially when reading biographies of other artist or writers who have seen this performance and I long to join their ranks.