First People :: American Indian Poems and Prayers
Cookies | Privacy Policy

The Children of Moonbow Falls

God! Where should I start?
It's so very sad - and quite ironic -
That a whiteman sits here
To write this sonnet

About the Indian children at "Ywahoo Falls"
Raped and hacked to death
Chopped to pieces - and then left
At the bottom of the cliff

They were waiting there for sanctuary
To be taken to a Christian School
But they were cornered - and once caught
Indian fighters killed them - all for sport

Lead by Hiram "Big Tooth" Gregory
A Franklinite out of Tennessee
Who killed all Indians he could find
And the U.S. Government didn't mind

Gregory's men had sanctioned approval
From the Governor - and the U.S. War Dept.
They signed away the life - of the Cherokee
And in return for scalps - they got a fee

Trapped at "Moonbow Falls" with no way out
One hundred little ones died in the rout
They died with "Standing Fern" that dreadful day
Some just babies -too small to run away

They killed the children and their mothers
And even cut pregnant women open
They planned that nothing alive would remain
These hateful men must have been insane

Oh! Where was "Ywhaoo" or "Spirit Rider?"
"Time Untime" it seems had gone away
As baby after baby died in and mud
And the holy river ran with blood

"Cornblossom" with her "Thunderbolt Braves"
Arrived too late - to save the day
And when she looked upon the bloody scene
She screamed a scream that's still heard today

"Ani-Yun-Wia" pride had been defiled that day
As "Cornblossom" charged into the bloody fray
Killing Gregory's men - who were still there
But the pain and suffering was too much to bear

After killing every white man that she saw
She turned her face to heavens door
The massacre of husband, son, and daughter-in-law
Tore her apart and left her insides raw

And for the two days that it took for her to die
She clenched her fists and chanted at the sky
Her grief eventually took her earthly life
But to say the story ends here - would not be right

It's said at full moon she still comes to "Ywahoo"
And her voice can be heard resonant in the falls
As her spirit is resurrected there in hallowed light
And she calls the World to put things right

And true believers can hear her say
"Remember my children" in a soft and mournful way
And as her spirit gestures amidst the mist and wet
"Remember My People -We're not conquered yet"

© Albert Gazeley, 2003

Return to Native American Poems and Prayers

top of page.

First People. Your site for Native American Legends and lots more besides.