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Reconciliation Realized

Aanii! Boozhoo!
A welcoming salutation
to strangers whose long sojourn
by jiimaan , driven by billowing clouds,
has brought them to our shores.

Come, rest upon our mats,
shelter yourselves in our lodges,
renew your strength with food,
quench your thirst with clear, pure water.
Creator’s gifts are yours as well.

Not ours as well,
but all is ours.
Now to justify
our appropriation.

Terra Nullius—an option!
From that old Roman edict—
Dwellers, unlike us,
not human beings.
The land is empty.

More is required.
Moral justification,
to cover our sins.
Look to the Church.
A papal bull, maybe two!

Yes, Bulls of Discovery
Romanus Pontifex
conquer, colonize and exploit
non-Christian nations
and their lands.

Inter Caetera
Subjugate discovered peoples.
Bring them to the faith.
Propagate the Christian Empire.
Radical title is born!

O Crown, turn from your arrogant ways!
Courts of learned men, reject your biased views!
Is it greed perhaps,
or love of power
that blinds you?

Your highest court decreed:
It is understood that the Crown
acquired underlying title
when it asserted sovereignty
over lands, not theirs.

Understood? By whom?
By the ones with the power
to take by force.
Coercion is your character.
Is reconciliation beyond reach?

It only comes through equality.
Reject Terra Nullius.
Cast-off Doctrines of Discovery.
Live up to our treaties, share Radical Title,
Reconciliation realized!


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