Tag Archives: Nez Perce

“Indian People Are Still Here”

“Indian people are still here,”
Otis Halfmoon of the Nez Percѐ tribe maintains
and adds: “We are not going away. It is time that
The newcomers to this country started paying
Proper respect to the elder status of the first nations.”

Chief Joseph: “Every animal knows more than you do. White men have too many chiefs. Learn how to talk, Then learn how to teach.”

a nation whose population
marked its intent to live in peace
yet was forced to dress in war-wear
for the U.S. government
began to shoo it away
way down below
onto reservations

in the words of the reservation doctor
he died of a broken heart
his countless appeals
to federal authorities
had after all
failed

“I am tired of fighting . . . from where
The sun now stands. I will fight no more”,
uttered by In-mut-too-yah-lat-lat,
“Thunder coming up over the land from the water”,
Or, “Chief Joseph” as he now is known to us,
the still proudly ignorant populace
that erodes more of his land
night by each dark night
day by each darker day

let us recall the times when we have died . . .
a death by a broken heart

© hülya n. yılmaz, March 18, 2018

[Published by Inner Child Press International in the April issue of the fifth volume of The Year of the Poet]

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“Nimi’ipuu”

the French
named them “Pierced Nose”
the ignorant
happened to find it befitting
such a limiting tag
the signaled practice however
is known not to have been wide-spread at all
othering the other “Self”
what’s new?

rivers have understood them
the lower Snake River
the Clearwater
the Salmon
as have streams and high plateaus
but also nature’s other gifts of abundance
berries roots a wide range of game
to which they would ask for forgiveness
for having had to kill for survival
while the French and non-French alike
continued their Nez Percѐ-butchery
among other acts of carnage
to pierce noses . . .
perhaps

horses were discovered in the 18th century
by this warlike-growing North American tribe
to its peoples alone does the gift of breeding belong
of the largest horse herds in the continent that is
including the distinctively colored Appaloosa
a most popular breed in today’s U.S.A.

looking at them with robotic eyes . . .
one should not neglect an add-on to this tale
what was (or may be still) their linguistic grouping?
we had better not forget our manners!
encyclopedias deliver detailed data on “Sahaptin”
even add this tongue is also called
Shahaptin and Sahaptian

imagine

if only we had this insight before
we would have . . .

© hülya n. yılmaz, March 15, 2018

[Published by Inner Child Press International in the April issue of the fifth volume of The Year of the Poet]

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