The Past and the Present
Hear the drums a beating,
Hear the bugels cry,
Hear the women weeping,
Hear the battle nigh.
The modern highway cuts through the hills,
While the trail road winds around.
It seems in such a hurry,
To leave this hallowed ground.
Slow down a little as you go thourgh,
Hear the things I see,
Then maybe you will understand
What this land means to me.
The Indian came to God's own land,
Because he needed food.
But what he saw, in his own heart,
He knew that it was good.
For Centuries, he loved this land,
Used only what he needed,
The buffalo for food and clothes,
The corn to be reseeded.
He fished and hunted, played and loved,
Taught the children how to dance.
Gave thanks to the Great Spirit above,
And even sang war chants.
Then the white man wandered in,
Saw much prospect here,
The rolling hills of lush geen grass,
Plenty of antelope and deer.
Then the white man brought in more,
The food began to leave,
They built their homes, broke the ground,
And the Indian's heart did grieve.
This land was paid for with sweat, blood and tears,
By Indian and white man alike,
Both saw the wonders that God had made,
And both claimed the right.
Now modern homes side by side,
Where tepees used to stand,
Tell all who see of the dying past,
In this Dakota Land.
Yet, as I look around me,
The past comes rushing near,
The trail road a silent reminder,
In this land I hold so dear.
From an ablumn of songs I have written while a resident on
the Rosebud Reservation Of South Dakota. written 1975
Copyright © Marycile Beer | Year Posted 2005
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