In a Far Country is My Heart

October 15, 2006

In a far country is my heart
And though it calls, I cannot go
Swift as the Nightwing flies,
Which the white man calls the crow,
To the Indian Nations

Where in the lodges of the reservation
Tales are told of long ago,
In the warrior tongue still spoken,
Though many words I do not know
That my grandfather remembers

Before the endless lands were taken
And the treaties all were broken
And the Elder tribes forsaken

Westward Ho! With blood and slaughter
Came the white man like the water
Like the wave that took Atlantis
Took the sons and the daughters

Cortez came with smallpox in 1522
Washington slew the Iroquois
And Custer scalped the Sioux

Now the Red Gulags that are the reservations
Form an Archipelago
Indian islands in the American sea
From Canada to Mexico

And the shaman’s dreams
Have been all of woe
Since the surrender of Geronimo

– Irving Karchmar, © 1991

Ya Haqq!