Voices in the Stones

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Life Lessons from the Native Way.

You did it again, Kent.“Voices in the Stones: Life Lessons from the Native Way” is yet, another piece of masterful writing.The prologue alone is a piece that should be required reading for anyone who knows, thinks they know, or doesn’t know anything about the Native American milieu.

How you are able to capture the essence of “survivance” (see Gerald Visnor) and give it meat and bones is testament to your skill as a keen observer and profound interpreter.It’s as if you are taking me through a box of old photographs of cherished Native friends.You know the context, history, trauma, and triumphs of every snapshot.And it’s not just about telling a story.It’s about giving light to the mind, heart, and spirit of every Native you encounter.

In the Epilogue you call this book a “sketchbook of reflections gained from thirty years of living near to the heartbeat of Native America.”In a recent Facebook post you also said that, “Voices is a three-part book structured almost like a musical composition, with the first part being a narrative of how the Native American people I have known see our American historical experience, the second being a series of stories of my experiences in Native America that have given me insights about how to live a meaningful life, and the third being a personal reflection on where I think we need to go from here as common children of this common land.”

It is, Kent, music - story - insight - and reflection.Thanks so much for bringing us this beautiful literary photo of your experiences with our Native grandmothers and fathers, parents, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters, and the endless list of cousins.I hope this book becomes a treasured gift given to our most treasured people, Kent.I need to share this with those I hold precious.Chii-mii-gwech, Nii-gii.

Tom Kanthak

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