Oceti Sakowin, a poem for Standing Rock

standingOceti Sakowin

We woke up to the drone of planes
circling above and soft horse whinnies—
animal breath making heat.
Over the loud speaker,
a man told us that the black snake
oozes closer, feeding on:
our stone hopes thrown into the river,
our wondering at wasted presence,
the chalky walls we build.
Dawn breaks low in the sky
and we watch the smoke turn upward,
byproducts of some mysterious something
we do not entirely understand.

Photo Credit: Mike McCleary, Bismarck Tribune