Trail of Tears


Everything I once knew to be true

now drowns in that great fog

we call our mind, that great gig

inside our head, the gray dog of thought.

I have found it’s never too late

to stand beneath a tree and give thanks

for dreams left behind by the holy Chippewas,

Dakotas, Chickasaws, and Shoshoni.

They were the founders of joy in setting suns,

rising moons, and dry tears of the lonely wolf.

I knelt before the Great Oak and began to cry.

My brave ancestors bloodied and bruised

began a long trek west urged on by the white man’s whip.

We buy candied apples and cotton candy to celebrate

the very day Running Moon and Gray Cloud took their last gulp of freedom.

Many died on the trail of tears.

We laugh and buy tickets for canoe trips.