November 14, 2009

firesong cat-tears

Listening to Johnny Cash sing "The Ballad of Ira Hayes" holding kitty in the rocking chair in front of the fire, for some reason she always senses silent tears, twice she looks up:"Mom why are there tears?" don't worry kitty we cry over any & everything, always have, always will. I didn't know (or forgot) that "Ira Hayes appeared in the 1949 John Wayne film, Sands of Iwo Jima, along with fellow flag raisers John Bradley and Rene Gagnon. All three men played themselves in the movie. Wayne hands the flag to be raised to the three men. (The actual flag that was raised on Mount Suribachi is used in the film.)
'The Ballad of Ira Hayes,' is by Peter LaFarge. Covers of this song were done by Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, Smiley Bates, Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Kinky Friedman, Tom Russell, Hazel Dickens, Patrick Sky, and Townes Van Zandt."

Ira Hayes,
Ira Hayes

Call him drunken Ira Hayes
He won't answer anymore
Not the whiskey drinkin' Indian
Nor the Marine that went to war

Gather round me people there's a story I would tell
About a brave young Indian you should remember well
From the land of the Pima Indian
A proud and noble band
Who farmed the Phoenix valley in Arizona land

Down the ditches for a thousand years
The water grew Ira's peoples' crops
'Till the white man stole the water rights
And the sparklin' water stopped

Now Ira's folks were hungry
And their land grew crops of weeds
When war came, Ira volunteered
And forgot the white man's greed


There they battled up Iwo Jima's hill,
Two hundred and fifty men
But only twenty-seven lived to walk back down again

And when the fight was over
And when Old Glory raised
Among the men who held it high
Was the Indian, Ira Hayes


Ira returned a hero
Celebrated through the land
He was wined and speeched and honored; Everybody shook his hand

But he was just a Pima Indian
No water, no crops, no chance
At home nobody cared what Ira'd done
And when did the Indians dance


Then Ira started drinkin' hard;
Jail was often his home
They'd let him raise the flag and lower it
like you'd throw a dog a bone!

He died drunk one mornin'
Alone in the land he fought to save
Two inches of water in a lonely ditch
Was a grave for Ira Hayes


Yeah, call him drunken Ira Hayes
But his land is just as dry
And his ghost is lyin' thirsty
In the ditch where Ira died

lyrics from

The rate of people losing their jobs is the worst that it's been in 60 years.

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