The Ghost of Wovoka

A man from the North

who talked about Jesus

taught us to dance

raised dust over the hills

of Southern Utah

South Dakota


to save the culture

to stay alive.


Some crazy mormon

who thought he was Jesus

gave him a shirt

to turn bullets away

so we marched in our circles

of hope and devotion

saw visions of loved ones

cut down


The army kept coming

and all of the dance shirts

hang in the museums

with bullet holes in them

to stand as witness

to stay alive


We still march in circles

of hope and obedience

with our dance shirts all pressed

and buttoned up tight

silk ties

and high heels

to fit in with this culture

to stay alive


Because some crazy trickster

who called himself Jesus

kept us going in circles

and promised us peace

and the ghosts keep on dancing

to make us remember

to stay alive



© S. Kay Nash 1997 All rights reserved.

Originally published in Recursive Angel (which now seems to be defunct)

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