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Family photograph

Gerald Vizenor

my father
clement vizenor
was a spruce
among the trees
a native
by totems

corded for pulp
by federal
indian agents
my father
turned away
from white earth
the reservation
colonial genealogies
and moved to the city
with family
at twenty three

native tricksters
teased his memory
shared dreams
and chance
in a mason jar
and ran low
across missions
stumps and stations
late at night
in wild stories

clement abided
the old men
dressed for war
cold and gray
once united
forever cursed
by uniforms

anishinaabe men
deserted twice
by name and praise
break memories
on the nicollet
island bridge
over the dark
mississippi river

Traduït per Carme Manuel Cuenca
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