Sarah Richani
The Delight Song of Tsoai-talee
oil, 100x100cm

In the poem The Delight Song of Tsoai-talee by N. Scott Momaday the beauty of nature
and the privilege to experience its beauty by being alive are colorfully portrayed.
For me while reading the poem, it initially evoked a feeling of happiness of being able to
witness the marvels of nature, but then it suddenly triggered a feeling of sadness when I
reflected about humans standing in good relation to the earth and to all that is
beautiful.
Particularly, when knowing that this poem was written by a famous Native American
writer, who strongly influenced the Native American Renaissance, the poem felt more like
an urgent wake-up call to those reading it.
Native American tribes have suffered from being removed of their lands and forests. And
even nowadays they have to constantly fight to protect their sacred land from oil pipelines
and the oil industries that pollute their soils, landscapes and drinking water. This makes
living a nightmare and the poem becomes more like a dream of how it once was (or could
be in a distant future) to feel the happiness of being one with mother nature.
With these contrasting emotions of happiness, sadness, anger and hope, I created the
painting that combines all the metaphors used by the poet to cherish the beauty of nature
and embedded them in the clashing landscape that is engulfed by the greedy black poison
and its products.
My painting echoes the wake-up call in the poem and yet with playful colors the viewer is
carried to mysterious places of beauty and hope.

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