Ira Hayes by Luci Adams

 I knew who I was
I felt an urge
A pull to go
I was young
War would bring me recognition
I would be a great warrior.

 I forgot; it does not work that way in white-man’s land
They use, abuse, and throw you away.

I came back from Iwo Jima a Hero
I was lauded and applauded
From a ‘polite’ distance
No respect this white world has
For those who are different.

 Down and down I spiraled
Faster and faster
Until I died
Lost and alone
My people not understanding.
Me, not getting it.
White’s not caring.

 What did I not get? You ask
I forgot who I was/am.
My way/ideals and Whites’ did not mesh
I tried and lost myself
Hidden deep in the struggle.

 Now, one remembers me
She holds me in her heart
I feel less at sea
There is hope
Thank you Goddess
Blessed Be.