Sometimes there is good news and what I heard today about the return of Native American masks to the Hopi and Apache tribes shows that people can do the right thing. The Annenberg Foundation was an anonymous bidder and saved the masks from being lost to the two nations. I know that it is not always practical to return artifacts in every case but sometimes it is a gesture of good will to the original inhabitants of colonised countries and would go some way to show respect to these people.
I wrote this poem in 2004.
Millions of souls stare down
Across a carpet of green as
Mountains point skyward
Touching the heavens.
They, in turn, caress the earth
Casting their distant celestial light
On an earthly plane.
When the light was born
Few walked this land.
Now the light burns bright for some.
Yet those whose light burned here longest
Has long been extinguished
Snuffed out by a tide of progress.
Foreign values on a foreign soil
Putting out the light that burned so bright.
A star that lit up the mountain sky
But never sought to destroy its creator.
Mount Snow, Vermont
August 17th 2004
- US Charity Buys Hopi Artifacts to Return to Tribes (abcnews.go.com)