Pride is Indigenous: Featuring Sharon Day

Image credit: Matika Wilbur

June is LGBTQA2+ PRIDE Month. NACDI recognizes the contributions of Two Spirit and queer people to our community with this series of writings from Two Spirit and allies. At NACDI a third of our staff identifies as Two Spirit, gender fluid, and queer. At NACDI we embrace the traditional roles of our Two Spirit relatives. 


Rainbows and Such

Driving home the other night

A beautiful rainbow appeared in the sky

It reminded me of the lyrics to a song

I wrote years ago


“You are my rainbow

When skies are dark

And my world is falling apart

Soft colors so sublime

Appear through the clouds

I know

All will be right

I know 

You are my rainbow

I give thanks for the love

Cuz you are my rainbow”


So many years ago

When I wrote this little tune

Love was not the law

In Minnesota or anywhere else in the world.

I feel so grateful today


And still I grieve for

the young ones

Next Benedict in Oklahoma

Who was only 16 years young

Who was bullied 

And after an altercation with 3 female students

Was found dead.

The autoposy report said she died of an overdose of antidepressants and an antihistime.

Where was their rainbow?

Who was their  rainbow?


In Minnesota

Love is the law

Families are moving here  

So their trans youth can receive medical treatment

That they cannot receive in their home states.


We are fortunate in Minnesota

Still there were 20 anti-lgbtq/two spirit bills proposed and defeated

with over 516 anti-lgbtq laws introduced across the country.

We must remain vigilant.


“You are my rainbow

When thunder booms

Making me jump

And lightning flashes across the sky

I wait awhile

To see

soft colors so divine

arching across the sky

All is right

I can be hopeful again,

Cuz you are my rainbow.


Sharon M. Day


About Sharon Day

Sharon M. Day, Ojibwe is enrolled in the Bois Forte Band of Ojibwe. She is a second degree M’dewin. She has served as the Executive Director of Indigenous Peoples Task Force since 1990. Ms. Day is also a grandmother, artist, musician, and writer.    

She is one of the founders of the Indigenous Peoples Task Force, formerly known as the Minnesota American Indian AIDS Task Force. IPTF began as a volunteer organization (1987) with all of the work performed by the Board of Directors. In September of 1988, IPTF hired its first staff. Ms. Day was hired as the Executive Director, May 1990 and has served in this capacity since then.  

In 1998, the M’dewin were called to help the Mendota Dakota people save a spring that is sacred to the Dakota.  The road was built 200 feet from the spring but the spring still flows. In 2003, when Grandmother Josephine Mandamin walked Lake Superior, Sharon walked two days on the eastern shore near Lake Superior Provincial Park in Ontario. Since then, she has led 20 water walks, leading several each year.  

She is an editor of the anthology, Sing! Whisper! Shout! Pray! Feminist Visions for a Just World; Edgework Books, 2000. She has written several plays for Ikidowin Acting Ensemble and Pangea World Theater. Some of her music is recorded on the CD Nibi Walk River Songs.   Ms. Day has received numerous awards, including the Resourceful Woman Award, the Gisela Knopka Award, BIHA’s Women of Color Award, The National Native American AIDS Prevention Resource Center’s Red Ribbon Award, the Alston Bannerman Sabbatical Award, and the Spirit Aligned Legacy Fellowship for three years. She as been named as one of the 100 best loved women by Yes! Magazine. The Governor of the State of Minnesota, and the mayors of both St. Paul and Minneapolis named November 10, 1998 Sharon M. Day, day.

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