Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Blessing of the Hudson

May 13, 2009

“We give blessings to the river to honor what the river gives us and for the remembrance of our ancestors that have passed on. We feel their spirit is alive on the water.”

Tony Moon Hawk of the Turtle Clan of the Unkechaug Nation and Marcey Tree in the Wind of the Turtle Clan of the Ramapough shared these words on Earth Day 2009 at Beczak’s riverfront. I stood alongside them and a dozen other guests including local clergy, musicians, and community leaders to ask God’s blessings on the Hudson River.

Everyone had a moment to honor the waters of the Hudson in their own way, while, all around us, life continued to thrive. As the clergy took turns offering a ceremonial blessing, the rising tide brought plankton to feed the young fish in the marsh. As the river carried ashes of a burned white sage leaf and an ear of corn that Mr. Moon Hawk tossed in to honor the river’s gifts of food and a trade route, mummichogs lay eggs on the muddy bottom of the tidal pool.

Today I stood on the rocks of Beczak’s beach looking at the beautiful Palisades cliffs and taking in the cool morning air. I once again felt the quiet of the Hudson River connect me to my world.

Steve Ruff
Director of Programs