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Indigenous Peoples' Literature

Passamaquoddy Girl

by Mary Ellen Socobasin

A proud Indian girl grows up on the reservation
Takes a walk to the white community
She knew nothing of "them"
She was greeted with laughter
She was treated unfairly
For she did nothing to "them."
She was called a redskin
She looked upon herself saw only brown skin
She wonders what is wrong with"them."
She is called an Apache with a sneer.
She says, I am Passamaquoddy eyes full of tears.
She asks herself what have I done to "them."
They make funny noises imitating her language.
She says to "them" I know two languages.
Doesn't that mean anything to you.
But to "them," they only understood one language.
The language of hate.
She asks herself what have I done to "them."
They don't know her. Still they condemn.
She committed no crime still they prosecute
Stones of injustice are thrown at her
Her heart starts to fill with bitterness.
She proclaims her hate for "them."
Years of ignorance go by.
Then she realized what was happening.
She was getting to be just like "them."
She says I am not one of "them."
I will not condemn all of "them."
For I am Passamaquoddy
A proud Indian woman.

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The Indigenous Peoples' Literature pages were researched and organized by Glenn Welker.