Hard Battle Won: Song of Victory

Rain washes away,
Cleanses the soul on this day,
Brings peace in its way

The battle was hard,
Making sad songs for the bard,
Our wounds we regard

Now is time for rest,
Finally peace in our nest,
Now for us the best

Another day, another battle in play,
But for now long songs of victory!



Note: Though this poem is personal and familial, it is also dedicated to the recent victory in the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) controversy. As Tanya Cliff just reported, “The Army Corps of Engineers has denied a permit for the current routing of the DAPL to cross Lake Oahe.  This is a major victory for Native American tribes…” Praise almighty God for this long-awaited good news!

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Happy Indigenous Heritage Day

As we rightly remember blessings bestowed
We cannot help but remember what is owed;
Land we now enjoy once belonged to bands
Of people here long before our Euro-throng;

So . . .
I Give
THANKS
But Not For
CROOKS & BANKS

I Am
GRATEFUL
But Not For
The CRUEL & HATEFUL

I Have
GRATITUDE
But Nor For
ATTITUDES & EMPTY PLATITUDES

Yes, we are rightly thankful for the seeds
That we plant ‘n grow to meet our needs,
But we should count the beads of history
And recall the grand mystery we erased,
Leaving only shadowy lines to be traced

Happy Thanksgiving, perhaps, but also . . .
“Happy Indigenous Heritage Day,” I say!



Note: For a succinct chronology of the protests against DAPL (the Dakota Access Pipeline) you may want to read the following article:

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2016/09/dakota-access-pipeline-protest-timeline-sioux-standing-rock-jill-stein

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On Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL)

No smiles but miles of tears with fear,
Our home stolen and made to roam,
When will insidious desecration end
And re-creation begin in redemption
Of our native land in bands of liberty?
Railroads, byways, rigs and pipelines
All fine to corporate heads dead
To the living world in which they live!
They destroy our worth
With our mother Earth,
But do they consider the bitter truth?
They are destroying themselves, too;
Is this truth that they never knew?
Stand with us against this grand plan
To further mar land and poison water;
Withstand this planned defilement
Without giving in to any beguilement!
To stand with us is to stand with you ~
This earth is also place of your birth ~
For we are all one under shining sun,
And our work of restoration just begun!



Important Note to Readers:  I have drawn my inspiration for this poem from Tanya’s “with reservation,” and would strongly urge/encourage you to read her poem and the information she provides. ALSO, please very seriously consider signing the “Stop the Dakota Access Pipeline” petition, and please know that it does not matter if you reside in another country! Well over 300,000 people have already signed and some of those signers are from outside the U. S. Just bear in mind that this issue concerns largely helpless Indigenous Peoples who need your voice as much as any other. Thank you and God bless!

Come Now to the Reservations

NativeManWe crawl-cross thru mountain passes, the journey hard and long,

Even for the strong; forced from hearth and home our tome is sad;

We’re making this journey, taking very little, sacks on our backs;

Is there some promised land ahead, or just the hot, desert sand?

We are a band of sojourners now, and how sad is the tale we tell;

They came to claim, driving us to reservations for our preservation;

Ah! now others come from the south thru the mouth of river grand

And push them away and they say they have no right, these aliens

Are but plight, an ugly sight; these foreigners are not even white!

And what should we say? Come join us on our reservations for

Your own preservation; we reach out to you now to teach you!

Will you now learn the lessons that burn deep within our hearts? 

Really Now … It’s Time To Change!

Far past time, really. Christopher Columbus didn’t even discover “America.” In fact, Amerigo Vespucci (for whom two continents have been named!) didn’t discover “America.” Scandinavians “discovered” Greenland, Iceland and, yes, the eastern coasts of Canada as far back as the ninth and tenth centuries, and after some failed colonization attempts in Iceland, continued trade well into the 14th century. (R. Riendeua, Brief History of Canada, 19-20) This was most assuredly not unknown by the entirety of the rest of Western Europe! Of course not, which partly explains the expeditions of Amerigo Vespucci the late 15th, early 16th centuries, the first being shortly after the (in)famous voyage of Christopher Columbus in 1492. (C.R. Markham, The Letters of Amerigo Vespucci and Other Documents Illustrative of His Career,  “Introduction”)

Besides, as so many people have pointed out for years upon years now — generations, in fact — there were thriving cultures living here in Abya Yala, “one of the terms given to the pre-Columbian American continent by a group of native Americans called the Kuna people who inhabit Panama.” (Cf. Quora, “What did the native people call the American continents?“) What reason is there, then, to celebrate “Columbus Day?”  I mean, it’s really laughable when you think about it… If we’re going to celebrate excursions by Western Europeans — and let’s not forget the Russians who were colonizing the Aleutian isles and western sections of Alaska — then why not Leif Erickson Day? Or Vespucci Day? Or Erik the Red Day? Or, to hell with it! Why not Western European Exploration-Exploitation Day! At least that would be more honest! So, anyway, with this I wish my readers…

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