This morning I was enjoying watching the goldfinch pull down from the massive thistles I let grow in the yard...
Before looking out I heard his sweet song announcing he had landed to balance and pull, tossing the spent head over his shoulders and at his feet.
The opening of The Great Law (The Haudenosaunee Constitution) says:
Thank you, goldfinch, for showing me feathery down instead of weed.
I am Dekanawidah and with the Five Nations' Confederate Lords I plant the Tree of Great Peace. I plant it in your territory, Adodarhoh, and the Onondaga Nation, in the territory of you who are Firekeepers.
I name the tree the Tree of the Great Long Leaves. Under the shade of this Tree of the Great Peace we spread the soft white feathery down of the globe thistle as seats for you, Adodarhoh, and your cousin Lords.
P S Susan just reminded me that protocol is that the name of Dekanawidah is not spoken aloud, except in very specific circumstances. He is called, instead, The Peacemaker.