Construction Literary Magazine

Fall 2019

From Ceremony

From <i>Ceremony</i>

Photograph via Flickr by shutterhacks

Leslie Marmon Silko, Ceremony

“From the jungles of his dreaming he recognized why the Japanese voices had merged with Laguna voices, with Josiah’s and Rocky’s voice; the lines of cultures and worlds were drawn in flat dark lines on the fine light sand, converging in the middle of witchery’s final ceremonial sand painting. From that time on, human beings were one clan again, united by the fate that destroyers planned for all of them, for all living things; united by a circle of death that devoured people in cities twelve thousand miles away, victims who had never known these mesas, who had never seen the delicate colors of the rocks which boiled up their slaughter.”

The poetic description in these sentences is Silko’s way of making this message resound: Tayo, the narrator, wants to see one clan of human beings where he can find peace instead of frivolous and destructive wars.