Historically accurate, narrative poem
29 December, 1890 - At Wounded Knee Creek
A baby cries for its mother slain
and a way of life dies on that frozen plain.
Old Chief Big Foot and his small band,
for Custer’s last stand are made to pay-
on that cold December day.
Women, children, and unarmed braves-
lie tattered and torn, dying and dead-
in and along a crooked shallow rill
that afforded no protection to those that cringe
from the 7th’s deadly Hotchkiss guns on the hill.
Custer’s former command has at long last-
on defenseless people exacted unfair revenge-
for past defeat in combat fair.
The Great Spirit sent a blizzard that same night-
to cleanse the air and hide the earth
so that he could not see-
the death and carnage inflicted there
at Wounded Knee.
The carnage is long past-
all now is serene at Wounded Knee,
and upon the hill on the very spot
where once the Hotchkiss guns did stand-
a small strip of land now remains
for Chief Big Foot and his Minneconjou band.
Finally theirs for eternity or until the sun sets no more-
purchased on that cold December day
with blood and gore at Wounded Knee.
“I did not know then how much was ended-
When I look back from this high hill of my old age-
I can still see the butchered women and children-
lying heaped and scattered all along the crooked gulch-
as plain as when I saw them with eyes still young.
And I can see that something else died there in the bloody mud-
and was buried in the blizzard.
A people’s dream died there-
the hoop is broken and scattered-
there is no center any more, and the tree is dead.”
Chief Black Elk
Copyright © Curtis Forsythe | Year Posted 2017