Paired with Curtis's classic photographs, these sacred chants capture the heartbeat of a people. An Apache prays ""for people to smile as long as I live""; a Yokuta, to be ""one with this world!""; and a Kiowa asks for universal charity--""Because I am poor,/I pray for every living creature."" There are songs about birth and old age; songs for young warrior and those who yearn for their safe return; songs about living with joy (""The sky/loves to hear me"") and courage (""I am simply on the earth./Need I be afraid?""); and a powerful ode, composed during a Civil War--era massacre, about dying with dignity (""Nothing lives long/Nothing lives long/Nothing lives long/Only the earth and the mountains""). Philip (Odin's Family, p. 1054, etc.) arranges the selections--from a variety of traditions, among them Navajo, Pima, Chippewa, Cheyenne, Pawnee, Omaha, Passamaquoddy, Osage--in a circle, taking readers from dawn to dawn. Timeless poems, haunting photographs--a whole world to ponder.