Nora Marks Dauenhauer


Amelia’s First Ski Run

Amelia, space-age girl
at top of Sourdough
makes her run with Eagle Grandpa Dick,
Raven girl, balancing on space,
gliding on air
in Tlingit colors:
black pants, turquoise jacket,
yellow shoulder patches,
black hair like feathers
clinging to her head,
face the color of red cedar.
Once in a while
I could even see space
between her legs and skis.
Diving downhill
she continues
side to side, slalom style,
following Grandpa’ s red boots.
Then the two figures swoop around the

Grandmother Eliza

My grandmother Eliza
was the family surgeon.
Her scalpel made from a pocketknife
she kept in a couple of pinches of snoose.
She saved my life by puncturing
my festering neck twice with her knife.
She saved my brother’ s life twice
when his arm turned bad.
The second time she saved him
was when his shoulder turned bad.
She always made sure
she didn’ t cut an artery.
She would feel around for days
finding the right spot to cut.
When a doctor found out
she saved my brother’ s life