A new Rattle for me!

For our shamanic work in Nepal we have been asked to bring along a drum and or a rattle.

So a few months ago I was oohing and awing over my drums and rattles trying to decide, which one to take, or ifff it makes sense at all, to take one of my trusted instruments at all. All my drums are clad in Animal skin, Goat, Buffalo or Deer and so are subject to the ever changing humidity we would encounter in England and Nepal…….

But a rattle, a rattle would be fine and easy to take! 🙂

But which one????

Surely my Deer dew claw healing Rattle!  -That one would be just the right Medicine Tool to take! But what ifff something happened to it? Luggage gets lost… And that Rattle would raise red flags at every airport security check, Animal parts are “problematic” to import into the US, from where we fly to England and even more problematic in England. I could not bear to loose it! ….

For sure I would have to take of its large Owl feathers and the other feathers it carries and – well, that is, where part of the Power of this Medicine Tool is embedded.

My Medicine Tools are living entities and it would feel, as ifff I was asked by someone, to take off my nice and appropriate cloths and wear nothing – or an unsuitable substitute…… My fundamental conviction that “Everything is alive, has a Spirit and thereby speaks”….. can sometime complicate things 😉

Or my large Gourd Rattle which I use to drive out unhelpful energies would be a second choice. But, iffffff ever it falls onto hard ground, Gourds can crack. I had that happen and lost a beloved working rattle…..

Then just take one from my pile of countless drum circle rattles!

Yes, OK , what a good idea!

Maybe dress it up, just a little, make a travelling rattle, just for this trip and leave my trusted working buddies at home!

This here Gourd and this here stick, they “feel just right. This time boil the gourd, to cure and harden the shell…..Now how about some Wolf fur …..?

Yeah, well, when I get going, dressing something up a “little”, well, I get going and one thing leads to another…. and then Spirit takes over and all of a sudden i HAVE to ger some of that Bear fur and the little bone Eagle and Spirit demands via a waking vision crashing into my consciousness, that this and that is suposed to go here and there and yes, I am supposed to put  bells on it, (no whistles, luckily, but yes, feathers too…….

And then, 4 hours later fingers full of glue, fur in my hair, I loooooook at the crazzzzzy item in my hands – and 😦 do not like it! Not at all!!! What the heck is THAAAAT?

Spirit however is not finished with instructions:” Put the Owl feather tip on it!!!”


Ok, Ok, That is the tip of a previously broken large primary of a Grey Owl, that along with a complete wing I received as a gift from our Sachem of the Wolf Clan of our Longhouse.

I go upstairs and get out my Owl feather box, retrieve the requested feather and put it into position at the top of the rattle.

My hands start shaking. EVERYTHING shifts,My Soul breaks through a membraneous barrier and tears well up in my eyes. .

My Rattle! This is my Rattle!

I loooove it, it is absolutely RIGHT!

Putting on this feather changed EVERYTHING!

It was the shift, when the power came into the medicine Piece!

Never had I experienced this transition so viscerally.

I sense, it catapulted this brand new Rattle waaaay past any allegiances I ever had with / to any other Rattle to the NO 1 Rattle in my ?? life??? work???  In my Soul!

I am flabbergasted flummoxed and deliriously happy!

The rest of the day I walk around the house in a daze, holding my new Rattle close to my heart.

But now what?

Taking it to Nepal?

I was led to create/ give tangible existence to it in preparation for this trip, so I will just pack it well and trust the Spirits, that guide me!

Hawk and Fox and moreBear claw and Bear fur

Mallard Wing smudging fans

This Bird was killed on the road to Gravenhurst and the wings were brought to me by a student.I managed to save one complete wing and the tip part of the second wing and create 2 smudging fans.

In Siberia the Mallard traverses all 4 realms – Earth, Air, Water and Fire – when cooked for dinner.

For the Finno – Ugric People a creation legend speaks of First Woman floating in the Waters of Creation, heavily pregnant with the shaman Väinämöinie, when a Duck started laying eggs on her knee. One of them fell into the water and out of the upper half the Sky was created, the lower half became the land, the yolk formed into the Sun and the egg white became the clouds. Now, that this happened, First Woman was ready to give Birth to her powerful son….

DSCN0788Materials used:

Mallard wing

Moose hide – moose is a powerful provider of sustenance for the Canadian

First Nations People as well as for the original People of Finnland and Siberia.

Many rock carvings and ochre drawings attest to that.

recycled black leather,-

Fox Fur – recycled – Wagish, the Fox is smart, silent and a good provider and always

has a smile on his face. He sees everything and chooses, when to be seen. In Siberia we see Ee’ren Dilgiczek as a protector from unwanted energies

Mother Earth the Turtle =hand carved bone with beads

hand carved bone Bear = healing with herbs, herbal Medicine

Quartz crystal from Thunder Mountain in Arkansas

Wood, pottery and fashion seed beads,

Turquoise = healing gem of the Apache and Navaho People,prevention of injuries and harm


Gichi Manitou = Great Spirit, universal Life Energy, great Mystery

Spirit Boat = vision Quest = a Medicine journey into the wisdom of

Earth Mother to find healing or a cure -Peterborough Petroglyph Provincial Park

Lightning bolt = Power

Spiral of Life

Other Feathers:


the second Mallard wing fan




Spruce grouse



Inspirations and Transformations

Inspirations and Transformations

Watching the Ravens overhead, becoming familiar with the individual Birds, that live on our land, starting to recognize them, does not only lead over into writing blog posts and poems about them, it also calls forth designs – to be realized if Sterling silver, brass, copper and gemstones or drawn onto leather and canvas. It feeds the curiosity of the artist of just how to portray the Spirit of Karakoruk – and how it would be different compared to Bran, the Gaelic Raven….

Put the 2 next to each other to have a conversation!

What would they say?

Would they talk about the Wolf packs that keep them in food?

Wolves and Ravens hunt together, did you know?

Ravens often see an Animal, injured or exhausted and their cawing alerts the Wolves…

 Also many a Raven flew over the Wolf lair, alerting them, fluttering low, then off in the direction the prospective prey is located…..

And the Wolves knew, to follow.

Ravens then will dine on the plentiful leftovers of Wolf kills.

But stealing a Wolf its food – well, THAT is quite a different matter.

Then a Raven just might be added to the Wolf menu……

The local wildlife sanctuary has several Wolves, that due to injuries or attempted domestication can not be released back into the wild. They live out their lives in the spacious wooded enclosures in the back of Aspen Valley, getting fed twice a week with meat from local farms.

Ravens are wherever Wolves are and so too at the sanctuary. The swoop down into the enclosures to snatch a morsel – but watch out, Wolves can jump and then teeth close around wings – and end of story….

Or maybe not……

T. from the sanctuary, saw what happened to the Raven and went back into the enclosure, luring Amarook into the other corner with another nice piece of meat.

But it was too late for the Raven…. but not too late for its feathers.

I got a phone call. And 2 hours later this Raven was on its way to a new life – with me – and with you.

First there is the Spirit Release ceremony, when he got smudged and I sing to his soul, to honor it and let it float up, into the Trees, into the realm of Kakagee, the – we would say E’eren – or Manitou of all the Ravens here….

  Usually it is an emotional farewell, but after the tears have dried, I am ready to take the wings, whole, spread them out to cure and then dry. The claws will receive the same treatment.

The head will go into an Ant pile for about a week or 10 days – securely fastened inside a live Mouse trap, so that Brother Fox and sister Coon will not steal my prize….

All the feathers will be taken, cleaned and preserved. Then the body of poor unlucky Raven will be deposited, where Brother Fox knows to look…..

A few months later I will go to work.

The wing will become a Raven fan, with a Deer antler handle, Wolf fur and a Sterling silver Wolf inserted – or should Peter rather cut out a Raven?

The finished item will be smudged and invocated on the next Full Moon.

In honor of Raven, in honor of Wolf and in honor of the person, who will one day own and use this powerful Medicine Tool.