NativeTech: Native American Technology and Art ~ Poems & Stories

I wrote this piece especially for my father. He had gone to a store and picked up a book about the Trail of Tears. As he was browsing through it, he began to cry. It was difficult for him to hold back the tears as he read about trials, tribulations, and heartaches of everyone that lived so long ago.

He told me about his tears and had asked me to write a poem about "Why Yonah Cried".

As I was writing, I thought about the reason for his tears. They were selfless tears shed for the injustices inflicted on others and for that reason the piece became Crystal Teardrops.......perfect, selfless tears shed for others.

Julia Ann Martindale Wilburn
Crystal Tear Drops


T.W. Martindale
Sagwu Usdi
March 1st, 1998

What do you, if I may ask, worry about in your "perfect" little world?
Grant me the pleasure of knowing this one thingÖ
Is it for the safety of your family that you yearn?
Or is it your wish to possess that which you do not, but others have?

Come travel with me on a journey through another oneís mindÖ
Become one with me as I ponder the reason Yonah cried.
Can you open your heart to receive the unknown?
Or are you afraid of itÖ Afraid to see the person you really are?

Come and seeÖ Hear the man, Yonah, as he cries.
Feel with me the heartache he feels for the pain of others from long ago.
IF you feel at all, you will feel as I feel.
Our spirits are ages past due for a release of feeling for others and our uncaring ways.

In his hand, he holds a bookÖ One he hopes will lead him home.
He is on a quest for his family and a people long ago.
As he reads, he begins to cryÖ ButÖ Why?
Others walk by and see his tearsÖ Tears of sorrow, which can not be contained.

Those passing by can not understand these tearsÖ
The tears he sheds are crystal clear, for they are pure of heart.
They are shed in sadness for loved ones he has found.
Shed not only for them, but those that they knew.

Yonah is in search of his family butÖ See what he has found.
He sees The Trail Of Tears shed by his family and those of their friends!
In his mind, he has walked with them hand in hand.
He has run with them for eternity, it seems, from those who oppressed and murdered them.

Have you yet to understand the reason for his tears?
Or are his thoughts so different from yours that you do not see?
Little does one understand the mind of another who is unlike them.
Many are those unwilling to identify with those who dare to be different.

I feel for each and every people who are or have ever been.
Do you care for others and the injustices they have born?
Are you able to cry with those who cry?
Have you ever cried for those who cried?

We need to learn to cry for those who longed to be freeÖ
Reach into your soul for the crystal tears you have long forgotten.
These are perfect drops, like Yonahís, and shed because of the cruelty of man.
Those who cried before him are the reason for the Crystal Tear Drops that Yonah shed.

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