May he be in Harmony, Beauty, and Delight.

When I was a little girl, my father, Robert Isaac Russell, would stop on his way home from work and buy me gifts-colorful pens, pencils and paint. It was his way of acknowledging my love of art, approving of my life choice, and expressing his love.

On the day that I learned of my father’s passing,
I was exploring and photographing
Canyon de Chelley with my beloved mentor, Taos Pueblo elder Telesfor
Goodmorning Reyna.
Right then and there, he took me for his daughter.

When the sunflowers and chamisa
were brilliantly golding the mesa

When the blue-purple star-faced wild asters
were clear and true

On the morning when we awoke
and the first snow of winter
covered Mother Mountain wth a shining shawl

That day
He crossed over.

May he be in Harmony, Beauty, and Delight.
Wherever he is
the Other Side has a Bright, Shining
Star of the Morning

-Gail Russell