She Would Never Rise From the Dead Again

She Would Never Rise From the Dead Again

Sentinel Rock, a naturally-formed stone tower, stands at Thacker Pass’ eastern entrance. The day before Easter, Max Wilbert and I accompanied Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone tribal members Daranda Hinkey, her father Day, and Eddie Smart to Sentinel Rock. We had...
The Potato Bug and the World We Used to Live In

The Potato Bug and the World We Used to Live In

Thacker Pass remembers the world we used to live in. She murmurs these memories in the long strides and white haunches of mule deer fleeing the scents of humans over the sage. She sends her reminiscences in sudden March snow squalls on otherwise sunny days. She...
The Warmth Yet Remaining

The Warmth Yet Remaining

A war is being waged against life on Earth. Rivers, forests, oceans, whole species, and millions – if not billions – of people have already been counted as casualties. We are losing this war. Badly. If we lose this war, we lose everything. We must not lose this war....
Far Harsher Than the Wind

Far Harsher Than the Wind

There is already an open pit in Thacker Pass. It was dug as part of Lithium Americas’ exploration of the site. Though it is small – just one half of one of the over 5000 acres Lithium Americas wants to destroy – it is as conspicuous as an open wound on a lover’s body....
Chemical Screams

Chemical Screams

If you look across Thacker Pass from the shoulders of the Montana mountains, the land looks like a quilt the Double-H mountains in the south pulled up to their chin to keep warm during the cold winter nights. The hills that roll towards the valley floor are checkered...
The Only Faith We Need

The Only Faith We Need

The Montana mountains standing above Thacker Pass in the north taught me that faith does not move mountains, but gravity, volcanoes, erosion, and moving tectonic plates do. A few days ago, while I was struggling with a lack of faith, two ravens circled above by head...
Where is Brigid on Paiute Land?

Where is Brigid on Paiute Land?

I went searching for Brigid in Thacker Pass on Imbolc. I almost saw her pale face on the lingering morning moon. There was a brogue – I could have sworn – in the ravens’ song before they hushed at my approach. Then, I thought I heard celtic spells in...
Taproot

Taproot

Now that Max Wilbert and I have stayed at Thacker Pass beyond BLM’s 14-day camping limit, a background dread has settled over me. While it’s unlikely that BLM officers will arrest us right away, if they really want to stop an occupation before it gets...
Sage Songs

Sage Songs

Rabbits taught me that each sagebrush has a unique voice. I often take long walks across the steppes in Thacker Pass. It’s not uncommon to spy a rabbit – with one floppy ear pointed one way and one another – peeking out of the tangles of sagebrush branches. Today, as...