By Jesse Manciaz (Xam’le Kuiz, Red Feather)

I sense it in the streets
I hear it in their voices when they speak

I feel it in my bones when they gather in the night
I see it in their faces with their torches bright

When they light their burning crosses more freely than before
When they’re given cover by their liar and their whore

We stand unconquered ‘mid so much hatred and despair
We stand with eagle feathers in our hair

This enemy is the same, it’s crossed our path at Devils River
It showed in Standing Rock, and gave us blankets laced with fever

But we are the warriors who protect the land
We hold the final line drawn deeply in the sand

We stand unconquered ‘mid so much hatred and despair
We stand with eagle feathers in our hair

Jesse Manciaz was reared by his grandfather, a Carrizo Indian, and his grandmother, a medicine woman. He dropped out of school to join a caravan of migrant workers and then joined the Marines at the height of the Vietnam war. He was wounded on two separate occasions. Each time, he was patched up, pinned with a purple heart, and returned to the war’s brutal carnage.

He later earned an Associates degree in Science from Brazosport College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of North Texas. Jesse’s affinity for the human potential drew him to a career in Human Resources. As Director of Human Resources at the University of Texas at El Paso, he entered the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program, but withdrew halfway through to accept a job offer from North Carolina State University as the Director of Employee Relations. Jesse retired and returned to Texas, but he is still active in the resistance to the destructive policies that violate human rights and defile mother earth. Jesse believes that if there ever was a time to sound the war drum, now is that time.

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