Moon at Midnight – Part XXXXXXVII (day 2041)


When Mountain Chief returned
From a journey to the other tribes he knew
He shared with us the situation
That the entirety of our people
Were facing, and it wasn’t pretty
He shared the systematic
Slaughter, trickery, cheating, imprisoning, hangings,
Or corralling onto parcels of land called ‘reserves’
That made little sense to anybody
But more sense then sure death.

The U.S. Army was hunting down tribes
Burning the villages of those who didn’t cooperate
Or turning their fire sticks
Upon women and children
Survivors were left so debilitated
That they would do anything.

Mountain Chief’s fury was obvious
As was most of the other people listening
And seven full days commenced
Where Mountain Chief and the elders
Discussed the possibilities
Of what was now to be done
The main ideas were:
To fight with the other tribes fighting
Which would lead to more or less
A life as an outlaw
And left out the future of the women and children,
To stay where we were
Without getting involved in any of the U.S. Army’s games
Nor help our brothers and sisters
Who were or were going to war,
To sign one of these Peace Treatys
That were being waved in the face of anybody
Who would listen
And submit a life on a reserve of land
Cut off from our way of living.

Among those present in the discussions
There were clearly some who were not going to sit
And wait for the U.S. Army to eventually find us
Who said that they would
No matter what way the choice was made
Help our fellow tribesmen
To take our land back
Most people agreed that this was indeed
A very brave proposition and commitment
For it was fairly evident by now
That U.S. Army’s forces
Were just far to powerful
With their firesticks
Meaning that any opposition was mostly a death wish
But never-the-less, a very honourable way.

There was also a growing sentiment that
We would become a safe haven
For those on the run
Seeking to heal or lay low
Until some sort of trouble or another
Would pass over
This seemed like a very passive way
To show our support
While still remaining not involved in the wars
Yet we knew that if it came time for us to sign
One of these Treatys
This would add complexity.

Mountain Chief was a proud man
And having to make such an important decision
Was not an easy one
If it were just him
I know that he would have chosen to fight
Until his last arrow was sent
But he had the responsibility to our family
To ensure its survival and health
And he knew that peace was very smart.


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