GIFT OF BLOOD 11

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Word got around that my Grandmother,

my maternal grandmother,

who was mostly Sioux,

had a gift for healing and the ill

were often brought to her.

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(It was also said that she seemed to have “second sight,” in that she would drop comments like, “There’s Uncle Joe, sitting on his stump,” (Uncle Joe having passed over).

Once a little boy was brought to her because of a nosebleed that couldn’t be stopped. She asked the father to go to the wood pile, choose a chip of wood, memorize exactly where and how it was placed, then bring it to her. When it was fetched she put some of the boy’s blood on it and told the man to return it exactly as it had been. And when he replaced the chip, the bleeding stopped.

I don’t know why she asked for the chip routine. I have read that sometimes Yogis, for instance, will demand that some meaningless task be performed in order to take attention from their own part in the healing — to sort of point up, in this way, the fact that he, the “healer,” isn’t the healer.

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