Wounded Knees

he deserved better

though no one ever said so

his lot by choices made and birth decreed

in another age he might have been a hero

living to a code that he believed

he deserved better

although he rarely argued

accepting that in life we pay a price

so he just got on with doing what he had to

a slave to circumstance

he played it nice

except for once or twice

when folks harangued him

bedevilled him to choose a different path

castigated choices, rules he lived by

then another side was seen

and no one laughed   

courageous then to ethics and behaviours

a knight of old who’d sworn to do his best

an explorer extraordinaire

a real man

tackling each and every challenge

daily tests

he deserved better

one or two of us knew that that was true

and we cheered silently on the sidelines

urging his success in what he felt he had to do


she deserves better

I saw her on the street just yesterday

her coat hung heavy on her shoulders

her face resigned to to all she had to pay

she might have travelled once in covered wagons

tilled at soil cemented on some plot

sewed seeds of future, harvested, lamented

a stoic that the caravan forgot


they deserve better

perhaps we all do

cast in roles

few choices

birth decreed

unsung heroes

terrain and times denying

that courage stands

on work-worn wounded knees

20 thoughts on “Wounded Knees”

  1. And for them their journey will be complete, leaving us at times scratching our heads watching their persistence, forgetting our own journey.
    Our eyes can see, but in truth will only ever fully understand ourselves, for our road is just as long, rough and winding, but only we have been there.
    And as other eyes look on to us, scratching their heads in our persistence, they will also not see our understanding, and a journey that for us, will complete us.
    Brilliantly written momus, I’ve missed that mighty pen, I was getting a bit worried. Those bloody bumps in the road can be distracting 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As we look around there are so many such people, getting by, rich in their own way, but undervalued by the world.
    So vivid was your picture in words I have a clear image of both characters. Wonderful piece which I really enjoyed reading.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So much conveyed, with such thrift. “They deserved better”. And why shouldn’t they have gotten it? Why does life cheat them. And why can’t we do something more to make it right. This swirls ’round and ’round my mind, constantly, but now you have given my thoughts better words to frame it. Makes me sad.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too, Beth. It might be character building to maintain the course while struggling but how fine would it be to have effort recognised and the load eased by just reward. I wish there were another way.


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