Friday, November 13, 2015

"Shorter American Memory of Indian Wars" by Rosemarie Waldrop

Shorter American Memory
of Indian Wars

To our surprise thirty or forty Indians were moving from place to
place. They discharged a volley of corn at Cowassuck. Christian burial
and the yelling of the Indians so terrified me that I soon considered
with what method to dwindle. My brother ran one way and I
was late in the evening.

              Looking over the hearts of my neighbors I saw a stout fellow
pursuing me with a cutlass which I expected in family worship. When
I presently fell down the Indian seized my arms and discoursed of
the happiness of those who had a house made with hands eternal.
The captives were pinioned and bound, and so was God the father
and friend. Blood began to circulate. I saw two men knocked on the
head with hatchets and two more reading the Holy Scriptures which
they were wont personally to swell with blisters. Nevertheless the
Indians marched us about a mile and then justified God in what had
happened. After they had done what they could they came naked out
of my mother’s womb and, upon humble petition, slew her.

Source of the text - Rosemarie Waldrop, Shorter American Memory.  Providence: Paradigm Press, 1988.

TJB: Post-objectivist, proto-flarf, this collage-poem posits that by inverting, cutting, & rearranging a memory, we expose the cruelty beneath.

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