Friday, April 28, 2023

to the girl who painted roaches

I never forgot the time you told me

that as a kid you used to paint roaches

with fingernail polish

in a poverty-stricken rez home 

I imagine you alone, wild-haired and dirty

in a house full of drunk adults

it reminded me of my own neglect

it reminds me of what I went without

but how unusual it was for you

to see beyond all of that dirty

and paint a roach so pretty

I imagine your walls 

crawling with little slivers of blues, reds, and greens

scuttering metallic things dashing in and out of everything

catching the moonlight thru a dirty screen

I wish I had known to paint the ugly things 

instead of trying to stomp out and hide 

the poor dullness inside

from the bedbug bites to the head full of lice

I wish I had grown up in a middle-class life

but it wasn't so 

it just wasn't meant to be 

maybe I should paint some roaches

and let them scatter (thru the cracks of my mind)

brings some color to the gray matter

and maybe then I'll be fine 

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Purple hands

In an old boarding school picture

I saw those native boys

With purple hands

The anguish in their eyes

full of pain

From the nuns who bound                                                                                                                            

 their hands with ties

simply for being left-handed

And I felt my own left hand cramping up

-from the shame

--from the pain of being told

I couldn’t write with it.

Those white teachers in grade school

 told me it was wrong

and so they forced me

to write using my right hand.

And was it right?

To be taught this way?

An education pockmarked

with superstition

And in their beliefs

--I felt I was marked

by the beast of my kind

By their notions of me being wild

 backwoods, unrefined

I used to dig my nails into my left palm

So much that it hurt--that it bled

A stigmata self-made

A byproduct of shame

of being told I am one of Cain’s children

And I am marked

by the color of my skin

Doomed to be a stolen orphan

Buried in an unmarked grave

Just like those poor children

with purple hands

Crying through the photograph

I feel it still        echoing

in my mind, my memories

--of past trauma handed down to me

generation to generation

I am those children

Stuck in a system of nuns, of priests, of schools

That have tied me into their notion

That I can be taught to be just like them

That I can live a life without sin

And I cry and I want to unbind

Left hand, right hand

Wrong way, right way

And with this all of this

hatred and frustration

I forgot I had my own heartlines, lifelines, bloodlines

I cut off my own circulation

Wednesday, February 07, 2018


I grew up mislabeled
Not a transexual
But traumatized like one
evil like a pentagram
i did not fit in
between the lions
and the lambs

if i am pagan
then i am a christian
either way
i am hated
by most religions
what's in my name?
In the dna?
That turned so many against me?

a sin to taint the family tree
truth can be a split-hooved thing

and so i did not honor
thy father and mother
i did not fit in
with all my wed-locked brothers

in the lion's den
the weakest one
does not survive the pride
my own father denounced me
long before he died

those venomous truths
still hiss at my heels
Those scaley thoughts
Make me unpeel
my name, my heritage
Born a bastard
I did not look like
All of the rest

And tho i am not satanic
I am deemed evil thru the aesthetic
From dog tooth and long nails
The christian ideology that kills the savage
Still prevails
--thru how my religious-raped family
Looks at me

And with the cutting of my mane
Went the dying innocent clasp
Of femininity
Neither him, nor her
Neither she, nor me

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Death to Hydra

it is eel-like
the reach of corporations
who worm their way thru
loophole after loophole
to take imminent domain
over the landscape
for the sake of some coal
or even black gold
and often we are told
It will be good for the nation

but this is a nation
of encroaching corporations
who have sky-scraped
through Mount Olympus
to control the laws that
govern us
and corrupt the ones who swore
to protect us

this land is no mans land
when it can seized by a court order
stolen by bureaucracy
by proxy of a bank

It was only a matter of time 
before a new hydra was born
out of the entrails of a dead plutocracy
whose oily tentacles
have now reached across our waters
across our reservations
selling a pipe dream
To an awakening nation

It is time to fight oil for water
It is time to fight oil with blood
for we have countless ancestors
fighting through us
fighting with us

let their voices slay
the many heads
of the black snake
let our words be the scythe
let our prayers be the fire
that cauterizes the wounds
of this greedy beast of an empire

Wednesday, May 25, 2016


It was soul heavy
generation crushing
these symbols
of false freedoms
that hang over us
as we stood in the Aryan shadow
of a new colossus

all the roads
lead to the same concrete idealogy
that the old gods
Always have to make way
For the new ones

And we--
the White Clay People
look up to the libertas
The mount rushmore
The barrier put in place
To divide and conquer
To make way for
For the systematic slaughter

their statues
eyes soulless and blank
how befitting
they made it in their god's image
and we carved into the stone
inevitable perishable hieroglyphs
that the sun would bleach out
that the rain would wash away
because we knew we'd all go back
into that shaken etch-a-sketch
that we call earth

we had no coliseums
no great pyramids
just the sinking mounds
that the giants left us
but does that imply our existence
is less meaningful?
put it on a pedestal

we don't care to be carbon-dated
Into theories that deny our place
here in the united states
With liberty and justice
For some

Old stones are crushed
Bones turned to cement
And plaster
But we did not mean
To be martyrs
Our own places of worship
Decimated to make way
For modern day culture

Because America was built in a day
so that only the whites can say
This is our land
And isn't it colossal
The joke made of my people
that we were somehow
Less worthy to hold dominion
Over these lands.

Let the decay come
And free us

Saturday, July 11, 2015

pow! wow!

I am the wow
in your pow!
I am intertribal
Yet I am always
dancing by myself

I am traditional
I am capable
--to adapt
and what of these labels
what of the blood degree
I am royal
yet I am able
to be inept

what is sacred
what is sacrilege
I am always thorough
but I am not purebred

I will have a vision
---when I want to
no one can govern
and so what if
i fail
does that reflect
my native synchronicity

I speak naively
I speak so bravely
I speak whenever
The fuck I can

I have no medicine
I have no man
I am just a minority
Trying to fit in with the masses
Whenever I can

so just don't ask me
just don't bother me
don't seek any answers
to some kind of new age

I'm just a person
Trying to be wooed
Trying to be wowed
In a biased
Ethnocentric crowd

Monday, December 29, 2014

Pandora of Pine Ridge

Pandora of Pine Ridge
has settled in
she has opened her parfleche
that is her skin
she has learned the rez way
and her plagues don't
will take you--gay or straight
wrapped in a papoose
and evangelical truths
she'll get through
with the booze
she'll steal the youth

And once its jarred
our earthenware heads
that these epidemics
are traditional-fatal
wrapped around
our family trees
another twisted vehicle
of countless tragedies

For generations
she has come
bestowing old testament gifts
who ever asked for this?
An extended olive branch
---of a missionary bitch?

Oh dear Pandora of Pine Ridge,
was it curiosity
that did us all in the end?
--to be culturally diverse
or maybe it was too perverse
to think we'd fit right in
with the new empire
of foreign titans

For Prometheus
Is doing time served
Do the fire people
Then, still
Get what they were deserved?

Hope is only a drink away.