by Deena Metzger
Perhaps never before in the history of humankind has the disparity between Indigenous mind and Western mind been more on the pulse of what we must pay attention to in order to insure our survival. Deena Metzger has written a novel in which two people, who are from each side of this polarity, begin a loving relationship. Sandra Birdswell is a student of climatology with an uncanny ability to sense weather events. Her mother, who died in childbirth, is a mystery to her. Her father, John, formerly a Reservation doctor, faithfully raises her despite his limitations and obligations. She first meets Terrence, a Native man and a professor of climatology, at her university classes. Years later, they are drawn together by the powerful forces of their love, for the Earth, for each other, and their mutual need to seek out the broken links of their family histories. When the UN report on climate change is released in 2007, the reality of the effects of the Anthropocene era sends a shockwave through both their lives. Their relationship to each other and to the elementals they are so intimate with — lightning, thunder, rain, mountain — brings them deeply and violently into a quest to live their lives in ways that disengage from colonial mind, the same mind that brought devastation to the Native peoples, and now brings all of humanity to the brink of extinction. Through their love of and deeply felt intuitive connection to the Earth, they each go to the brink of death to find their truth, to gain strength and wisdom.