Thursday, November 25, 2004

A contemporary Indian take on Thanksgiving

Not all American Indians (or is the term Native Americans the PC preference?) take the same view of Thanksgiving Day, or Columbus Day either, I would imagine. This snip from a newly published anthology of writing by contemporary Indian voices is by way of Wampum, a site I read for the quality of content I often find there. Link.

Dad: What was the name of the Indian who met the Europeans?
Grace: Uh ... Samoset?
Dad: Very good. Where did he come from?
Grace: Maine!
Dad: Uh huh. Who were his people?
Grace: That's easy. Us! The Abenakis.
Dad: Uh huh. You are related to Samoset. What were the Europeans doing?
Grace: Uh ... Waiting for Samoset?
Dad: Nope. Grave robbing. They were hungry. They were opening Pautuxet graves and eating the spirit food, the maize.
Grace: Ick. So where was Squanto?
Dad: He was living with the Wampanoags. Samoset reported the Europeans to the Pautuxet and Wampanoag sachems, then he returned to the Kennebec settlements.
Grace: How did Samoset know what to do?
Dad: The Abenakis had starved out the English at a place they call Popham.
Grace: Oh. I remember they all waggled their butts at Verrazano.
Dad: He he. So, at school this year, have they tried to make you do anything stupid this year?
Grace: No.

Submitted, as my buddy Catfish says, for your perusal. Wampum has a finger on a lot of governmental pulses. Fine print gets a good going over. The political take may not be mainstream, but that doesn't make it wrong. I haven't been mainstream in my life. I can relate.

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