Haida honour their dead #poetry #shortstory MT = might trigger

 

watched a documentary on the Haida honouring their dead

 

saw how totem poles used to hold their bodies in bentwood boxes set in the head

 

then some white man came along

 

dishonoured their bones and stole them away

 

like most things the white man did

 

the Haida had no say

 

kicking around in dusty old museum drawers a hundred years later

 

when they should’ve been honoured so their spirits could go home to Creator

 

how they raised $100,000 to fly to Chicago to repatriate their ancestors’ bones

 

can you hear my moans

 

I cried to watch how they treated their dead

 

their dead

 

as sacred

 

where I come from

 

people were disrespected in life and in death

 

abused as they took their very last breath

 

the enormous guilt I carry

 

it weighs me down

 

why am I still here

 

while they’re in the ground

 

when can I stop trying to pretend

 

honesty and authenticity

 

a dying trend

 

if I could share my truth as part of every day

 

would the survivor guilt I carry

 

ever go away

 

sometimes I long

 

I long to go home

 

sometimes I long

 

I long to go home

 

©2012 Clear Wind Blows Over the Moon

*toned down version with words removed.

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