Columbus Day

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This was the first poem I wrote in college. It did not come about from a writing class assignment but as part of a graphic design course. The objective of the project was to create a (you guessed it) Columbus Day card. I had been studying various tribes’ histories and customs since I was in 6th grade. The fact that we celebrated this guy at all just seemed wrong on so many levels. So in my lame form of protest I wrote the poem below. The images I used on the card were a piece of this cover art from Michael Whelan and this album art from The Cult (though I only found out many years later of the lawsuit from the boy’s parents over his picture). It was my first use of Photoshop (my only excuse).


Out of an azure still they hear the call.
Lead and fire fill the air.
Kindred hearts unite in battle.
The Earth Mother,
drenched in blood,
stands to defend her children.
The invaders come to conquer the six directions
in the name of a name.
It is the seventh direction,
center,
they cannot defile.
The conquistadors plunder the earth,
the air,
the heart, they cannot steal.