Wicaŋhpi Heciya Taŋhaŋ Uŋhipi

(We Come from the Stars)

Stellar nucleosynthesis.
That explains 
where everything

in our universe

came from according to astrophysicists who 
only recently discovered the cosmological constant causing
the expansion

of our universe.

Our creation story tells us we came from the stars to this place Bdote
where the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers converge,
our journey along the Wanaġi Caŋku, 

in our universe,

that stargazers later called the Milky Way now disappearing 
in the excessive glow of a million million urban uplights. 
The original inhabitants of this place,

of our universe,

we are Wicaŋhpi Oyate, People
and will remain here as long as 
we can see ourselves 

in the stars.

Give-Away Song

This is my give-away—
            not because I don’t want
                  it anymore,
            not because it’s out of
                  style or
                broken or
                useless since it lost
                its lid or one of its buttons,
            not because I don’t understand
                the “value” of things.
This is my give-away—
            because I have enough
                  to share with you
            because I have been given
                  so much
                    health love happiness
                    pain sorrow fear
            to share from the heart
            in a world where words can be
            meaningless when they come
            only from the head.
This is my give-way—
            to touch what is good in you
            with words your heart can hear
            like ripples from a pebble
            dropped in water
            moving outward growing
            wider touching others.
            You are strong.
            You are kind.
            You are beautiful.
This is my give-away.
     Wopida ye.   
          Wopida ye.
                Wopida ye.

Undivided Interest

This is what is left of my land:

       Meridian 05  Township 151N
       Range 064W  Section 09
       Acres 40  Type 253500 PA
       IA 708
     
Letter and numbers.
Fractions.
Undivided interest—divided
among 336 heirs.
My interest equals 0.119 acres.
My ancestor an Indian Account.

Her name was not IA 708.
She was called Tiyowaṡtewin
and her interest was
undivided.

Dakota Homecoming

We are so honored that

             you are here, they said.

We know that this is 

             your homeland, they said.

The admission price

             is five dollars, they said.

Here is your button

            for the event, they said.

It means so much to us that 

            you are here, they said.

We want to write

           an apology letter, they said.

Tell us what to say.