Wounded Knee

The wind here whips the grass and makes a soundwoundedknee
that’s sadder than any words. The clouds here blow
a fitful pall, a churning shroud near the ground,
a monument to the veil of driving snow
that tried in vain to hide the children slain.
Lakota, torn by hunger, torn by war,
surrendered all but their pride and knew no shame:
Their weapons down, they wished to fight no more.
But nothing could defend them–not a palm
held open, not the word of wasichu,
and not a plea for Wakan Tanka’s calm–
from men with guns, with knives, with coats of blue.
The wind here wails of crimes concealed by frost,
and cries for beauties, truths, and ways now lost.