The Memorial Ceremony for Grandfather Semu Huaute "Brave Wise Like Owl" was so very special. the Ceremony took place on Dog Man's Land, Salt River, Pima/Maricopa Community November 12, 2005.
There were people that had come to honor Grandfather Semu from California, New Mexico, Michigan, Seattle, Washington, Switzerland, and Montana.
We started around 7:00 P.M. with the blessing of the food. Grandfather Semu's Granddaughter, Sherrell was asked to do this blessing. Native foods had been prepared. There were two large Teepee's set up for the people to visit in.
The Chumash Ceremony started the Memorial Ceremony at 9:00 P.M. Tautacho Muhuawit, a Chumash Traditionalist performed the year-end Ceremony Grandfather Semu had taught him. Grandfather worked with Tautacho, teaching him many things through the years. I, Eneke-Alish am truly grateful that he could come to do this for Grandfather.
Next was the "Yaqui Deer Dancers." Dog Man had sent for them; so very special! The Deer Dancer's were young men, their Elders were all around them assisting and praying. In front of them sitting on blankets were the Drummers, the water drums. They danced for about two hours; I sat behind them watching the entire time. The "Fire Keeper", Justin, brought hot coals with a shovel laying them in front of me to help me keep warm, he did this for everyone throughout the night.
After the Deer Dancers were finished dancing, one of the Yaqui Elders spoke to all of us, then they came to shake our hands as they were leaving.
There were two Elders that stood singing with their gourds the rest of the night, singing their sacred songs. Dog Man, Tony and Meldon sang with their gourds the Pima's (Authums) sacred songs and some of Grandfather Semu's songs he had taught them years ago. Also some of the bird songs Grandfather knew from the Cahuilla in California.
When anyone got hungry through the night there was food for them. At 5:00 A.M. the last of Grandfather Semu"s belongings was taken to the fire pit to be burned, the ending of the Memorial and Grandfather Semu's completion. There was a breakfast feast ready for everyone.
Then Eneke-Alish asked Tautacho Muhuawit to present gifts to the Elders for their singing, dancing and prayers. These gifts were to honor them for their participation in the ceremony.
All the People there were able to take with them a DVD that was made available of Grandfather Semu speaking his wisdom sitting on a branch of a tree in Idyllwild, California. Grandfather's training began as a young man when he and others were taken by the Elders from Saboba to the sacred mountain. His training continued on this moutain and other sacred places throughout his life. Grandfather's audio and video recordings mean so much; to know his wisdom, teachings, and messages is a blessing in itself.
Eneke-Alish Huaute wants to do her best to carry on the good that Grandfather Semu did. He never had anything bad to say about anyone, he never discriminated, it was always inter tribal, inter racial and he didn't know how to hate. He made people laugh, sang his songs, and danced. In all the 34 years with Grandfather Semu, this is what he was, "But, he was also a man!" experienced World War II, and grew up at a hard time for his people.
Later on that morning, Earth Feather ran a Sweat for the women. The Sweat Lodge was near the area where Grandfather Semu's ending Memorial had taken place.
I must tell you! This Memorial Ceremony for Grandfather Semu was an experience. I and all that were there, will carry with them in their hearts and memories for the rest of our lives. We all felt Grandfather Semu Huaute's blessing upon us. "Sumasil, "Health and Happiness"
Peace, Be Gentle