02 September 2010

dog days

After dark campfire burns
echoes of futures
collide with times past.
Technology is a carrot
chased from the start.

Obsidian falls in grassy fields
shining under full moon light.
Black glass flakes off
under hammered stones
to reveal projectile points
arrowheads rubbed to perfection
deadly weapons pitched in
notched wooden spears
flint mapped stone— wrapped
tight with sinew strands.
Power in projectile points
that flute out over time as
people adapt to prey and purpose.

At the Anzick Site in Montana,
well maintained staffs
systematically snapped in fours
indicate funerary ritual
buried with bones
carbon dated to a time
that makes decades seem obsolete.

9400 years ago families gathered in Barton Gulch
leaving signs of pastoral existence.
Bone needles scarce in the lithic now,
indicate domesticity.
People tied to place.

Hands, bones, stones
separate meat from flesh.
Goosefoot and prickly pear seed
season meat wrapped in rabbit skin to
roast in charcoal pits blanketed with bulrushes
topped with more fuel.
Dinner is served.

Paleoindian ingenuity uncovered
in mother Earth’s Montana.


Sherry Blue Sky said...

Wow, this is an impressive poem. So much history and interesting detail in this work. I love "echoes of futures collide with times past." "Hands, bones, stones"......"goosefoot and prickly pear seed." Last two lines sum it all up admirably. Fantastic poem! Well done!

brenda w said...

Thank you for your kind words, Sherry. I'm taking a master's level college class on the indigenous peoples of Montana. It will be time consuming, and interesting. I'm sure more pieces will find their way out through the course.
Your visit and comments feel good. Thanks!

flaubert said...

Brenda I love this piece! I agree with Sherry, fantastic!
Sounds like an interesting course
you are taking.

Mary said...

Brenda, I love how your classwork makes its way into the poetry and what all I learn. Beautiful poem!

RiikaInfinityy said...

Wonderfully written! Love your words :3

I had tagged you in the Band-Wagon Tag game just right below this post @

:D Have fun!

brenda w said...

Pam, Mary, and Riika -- Thanks for coming to read my words. I miss you guys. Life is crazy busy. On the flipside...think about the food for more poems my school year will provide! Stories unfold every day.