The Message

by Ethel Mortenson Davis

The Sierra mountains
are home to the Kogi,
descendents of the Tairona,
an indigenous tribe of Columbia.

In 1514 a Spanish Conquistador
stood on the shores of what now
is Columbia and said to the Tairona,
“I will kill everyone of you
and bring every bad thing upon you.”

Some Tairona fled
to the high Sierra mountains,
and there they have lived
for five-hundred years.

“We descendents of the Tairona
have a message
for Younger Brother.

“You, Younger Brother,
who never listens,
are cutting up the Great Mother,
cutting out her kidneys and intestines
by digging for minerals and oil
and cutting the forests down.

“You are bringing the world
to an end–it will go black.
We have been to the tops
of the Sierra’s and have seen
the glaciers disappearing.
All the rivers from these
are drying up,
and soon the people will die.

“The Tairona have taken care
of the earth, but you,
Younger Brother, are killing
the Great Mother,
even selling the clouds.”

copyright, White Ermine Upon Her Shoulders, 2011.


Filed under Ethel Mortenson Davis, Poetry

4 responses to “The Message

  1. eremophila

    Reblogged this on Eremophila's Musings and commented:
    This situation of mining is happening the world over…..and it cannot continue.

  2. Renegade brothers. A grim truth.

  3. Yes, “even selling the clouds”. This poem is heartbreaking in all its poignant details, short but complete…

  4. Powerful message here – I wish everyone would hear it. (And truly listen….)

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