waawiita kiilhswa ‘Lost Moon’

Waawiita Kiilhswa ‘Lost Moon’ makes its appearance every three years.  In the recent past, 2013, 2015, and 2018 were all years that we inserted the Lost Moon.  We do this because our lunar calendar is ecologically based and must connect to the ecological changes referenced in the calendar.  A lunar year is approximately 11 days shorter than a solar year.  Over time, our month names start to shift away from the ecological indicators that give them their names.  In our community, we currently use Pahsaahkaahkanka ‘the Summer Solstice’ as our indicator of when to insert Waawiita Kiilhswa.  By adding Waawiita Kiilhswa every three years, we ensure that Paasaakaahkanka falls within the proper lunar month: Paaphsaahka Niipinwiki Kiilhswa ‘Mid-Summer Moon.’   By following this pattern,  we maintain a connection between our lunar calendar and our ecology.  Typically, Waawiita Kiilhswa is inserted during the dead of winter, after Mahkwa Kiilhswa ‘Black Bear Moon’ when everything is quiet. As a result, the Lost Moon does not have a set of ecological changes associated with it.

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