by Harriet Maxwell Converse
Translated from a traditional Iroquois prayer
We who are here present thank the Great Spirit that we
are here to praise Him.
We thank Him that He has created men and women,
and ordered that these beings shall always be
living to multiply the earth.
We thank Him for making the earth and giving these
beings its products to live on.
We thank Him for the water that comes out of the earth
and runs for our lands.
We thank Him for all the animals on the earth.
We thank Him for certain timbers that grow and have
fluids coming from them for us all.
We thank Him for the branches of the trees that grow
shadows for our shelter.
We thank Him for the beings that come from the west,
the thunder and lightning that water the earth.
We thank Him for the light which we call our oldest
brother, the sun that works for our good.
We thank Him for all the fruits that grow on the trees
We thank Him for his goodness in making the forests,
and thank all its trees.
We thank Him for the darkness that gives us rest, and
for the kind Being of the darkness that gives us light,
We thank Him for the bright spots in the skies that give
us signs, the stars.
We give Him thanks for our supporters, who had charge
of our harvests.
We give thanks that the voice of the Great Spirit can
still be heard through the words of Ga-ne-o-di-o.
We thank the Great Spirit that we have the privilege of
this pleasant occasion.
We give thanks for the persons who can sing the Great Spirit's music, and hope they will be privileged to
continue in his faith.
We thank the Great Spirit for all the persons who
perform the ceremonies on this occasion.
In September of 1891, Converse became the first white woman ever condoled as a Six Nations Chief.
This poem is in the public domain.