By Tracy Starchild
My small community of Plainfield, VT is very accepting when it comes to white people practicing Native American spirituality that has been modified to suit our lack of patience and understanding.
In fact, the whole aboriginal lifestyle is well accepted here: from Waldorf schools to trust fund kids living on Maple Hill in electric-powered tee-pees. Even the non-Co-op-types you see at the gas station sometimes, they don’t criticize how tee-pees are impractical for Vermont winters and were never used here by the indigenous Abenaki.
However, I do feel that the town has cast a shadow over my spirit for having sex with about fifteen guys since I moved here to audit some low-residency classes at Goddard College. So I have taken steps to reverse the energetic stigma I created with my welcoming yoni.
I have an announcement for the entire town. Even though I just slept with one of the grungy unemployed guys that hang out at the wall by Positive Pie, I am now, once again a nubile Virgin!
My neighbor with a credit card had just bought a pup-tent sweat lodge on eBay, and invited a bunch of us over for a casual purification ceremony. I knew that this would be a great chance to reclaim my innocence and hymen in the eyes of the Great Spirit.
Usually, sweat lodges are performed only after the participants have abstained from caffeine and alcohol for a number of days. But the six guys involved in the ceremony, and myself, had all been drinking pretty hard the night before. In fact, just to get ourselves alert enough to enjoy the benefits of the sweat lodge, we had to drink three pots of coffee.
Also, usually guys and women don’t occupy the same sweat lodge. Especially not if the woman is on her moon cycle like I am right now (which gives me great relief after the guy from the wall!) But in our case, we weren’t afraid of this taboo. Most of us had already sweat-lodged together before, but biblically, if you know what I mean.
It was great. We stripped down and saged ourselves, and made a prayer to the four directions. Usually someone stays outside and shovels in hot rocks from the sacred fire, while someone inside pours water over the rocks and releases the “Stone People.” In our case everyone wanted to be inside with me for most of the ceremony. So they took turns getting the warm rocks out of the small fire.
Meanwhile, I prayed and prayed that I would feel that fresh new Virgin sensation. I asked my spirit animal, the Rabbit, for guidance. The portable nylon sweat lodge wrapped in old U-Haul moving blankets barely got hot. In fact, if it weren’t for all the coffee, I probably wouldn’t have broken a sweat. However, when I did break that sweat, I knew that I was once again whole.
And now, as a new womyn, I feel empowered and pure enough to approach the new hunk that works at the Winooski Valley Co-op. I am finally, if only briefly, an eligible soul mate.
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