Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Poem by Marcie Rendon

Earth Memory

Earth memory holds me

I lay on the bones of my ancestors
Rhythms of silence run deep
As each breath
Each breath gives life

our grandmother’s dust
Is watered with the fallen dreams
of all women
all women
all women
sacrifice dreams for future generations

A breath of wind
Weaves Water
weaving dreams
We live whole lives between
Each breath

Our grandmothers dust
Waters our dreams
This accumulation of hope
Feeds our souls
Breathe life
Breathe life into being

In this season of abundance
Hear grandmother’s breath echo
Her breath moves
All the winds of time
All life intertwined

Earth memory holds me
Holds me to the ground
Holds me on the ground
Holds me in the ground
And sets me free

Poem by Marcie Rendon


a history
Drenched in blood

Oh wa Ya hey
Oh wa hey

There are no
Broken memories
Forgotten destinies

Hey yah hey
Oh wa hey
Hey yah way

My hope rising
Rising hope
De con tam in ates

I hear women call
I hear all women call

You cannot kill us twice

Oh wa hey
Hey oh aay

Lakota Dakota
Ho chunk
Anishinabe quay

I call
All healing
This earth
Calling all
All healing
This land never was gone
My feet never left this earth
Never left this earth
You cannot kill us twice

This earth never lost
My feet never left this earth
This earth never gone

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Poem by Jennifer Lisa Vest



Everybody wants to be an Indian

A pow-wow fancy-dancing

Feather-wearing Indian

Everybody wants to be the

Noble Savage of America

The old man on the banks of the river

Crying about pollution.

But who wants to live on the reservation

Bad coffee, beans, lard, diabetes

And too much TV

Who wants to farm on swampland

Bedrock and waterless sand?

Who wants to wrestle alligators for a living?

Everybody wants to wear suede

And fringe leather jackets

Patterns from Guatemala

Pretty beaded hair barrettes

And turquoise

But who wants to dress up

In fake Indian clothes

For snotty-nosed camp kids

Who call you "Hey Indian"

While you give them a tour

Of your culture?

Everybody wants to be an Indian

To be indignant about

"The crimes of white America"

To be spokesperson for the slighted

And the slaughtered

To write books about ecology

To teach workshops on herbology

But who wants to send their kids

To foreign schools that teach foreign language

Foreign culture


And how to disrespect?

Who wants to be laughed at in traditional dress

And told they have no culture

In the same breath?

Who wants to be idolized, romanticized

And iconized into something

You can never represent?

Everybody wants to be an Indian

A vision-seeking, sage-burning

Dream-catching Indian

Everybody wants to eat peyote

Dance at the Sundance

Sweat in the sweat lodge

Return to "the way things were"

And dress up like Pocahontas for Halloween

But who wants to have

Sports teams

And four-wheel drives

Named after your ancestors

Or your tribe?

Who wants to be studied

And who wants to be questioned

And who wants their every action


By non-Indians who claim

To know more than you do

About your way of life?

Everybody wants to be an Indian

When its popular

When its glamorous

When its easy

When its fun.

From the anthology Turtle Island to Abya Yala