Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "Remember the Lost"

This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls. It fills the "9 Indigenous Peoples' Day - second Monday of Month" square in my 10-1-19 card for the Fall Festival Bingo fest. It is posted here as the free poem for the December 3, 2019 Poetry Fishbowl reaching the $150 goal.

WARNING: This poem is all about American colonial genocide.


"Remember the Lost"


Set aside a day
to remember the lost.

Speak of the dead,
that they not be forgotten.

The Ais lived in Florida
and befriended the Spanish,
but regarded all others as enemies.
They died out due to a combination
of slave raids and disease.

The Bayougoula lived west
of the Mississippi River, where
they farmed corn and turkeys.
They were first massacred by
the Tonica and smallpox
destroyed the remainder.

The Massachusetts lived
on the east coast, and like
most of the eastern tribes
were soon wiped out by
the European invaders.

The Natchez lived in
Mississippi. Discovered
in 1701, they had been
destroyed by 1720,
mainly by the French.

The Pawtuckets lived
on the Merrimac River
where Chelmsford
stands, now extinct.

The Waterees lived
along the river of
the same name in
South Carolina,
long since extinct.

The Yahi lived in
the remote cliff country
of California, annihilated
by vicious massacres
during the gold rush.
The last survivor, Ishi,
died of tuberculosis.

The old tribes are
gone but not forgotten.

Their names still
whisper in rivers
and stand in states.

Speak, and remember.

* * *

Notes:

Extinct Tribes A-Z

Ais or Ays once liven on the Atlantic Coast of Florida.

Bayougoula means "bayou people," a Muskhogean tribe on the west side of the Mississippi River.

Massachusetts, survived only by the state's name.

Natchez, at Natchez ; discovered, 1701 ; chiefly destroyed by French, 1720.

Pawtuckets lived on the Merrimac River.

Waterees lived by a river of that name in South Carolina.

Yahi were California people, of whom the last was known as Ishi.
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, ethnic studies, fishbowl, history, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, writing
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