Evolution Poem by Sherman Alexie.

Evolution

Rating: 5.0


Buffalo Bill opens a pawn shop on the reservation
right across the border from the liquor store
and he stays open 24 hours a day,7 days a week

and the Indians come running in with jewelry
television sets, a VCR, a full-lenght beaded buckskin outfit
it took Inez Muse 12 years to finish. Buffalo Bill

takes everything the Indians have to offer, keeps it
all catalogues and filed in a storage room. The Indians
pawn their hands, saving the thumbs for last, they pawn

their skeletons, falling endlessly from the skin
and when the last Indian has pawned everything
but his heart, Buffalo Bill takes that for twenty bucks

closes up the pawn shop, paints a new sign over the old
calls his venture THE MUSEUM OF NATIVE AMERICAN CULTURES
charges the Indians five bucks a head to enter.

COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Walter Durk 10 March 2007

This is poignant. Right on the head. A sure-fire expression of America and how it has delt with Native Americans, as well as everyone else to this day.

20 11 Reply
Laura Kiernan 16 February 2008

Amen, brother. It's not culture if you can buy it for less than you spent on a tank of gas.

21 10 Reply
grace 12 August 2018

give the poems significance

1 2 Reply
Robert Murray Smith 04 November 2021

Brilliantly conceived from the wrongs of the past.

0 0 Reply
Chinedu Dike 18 November 2020

Really an insightful rendition set aside for deep reflective thought. Thanks for sharing and do remain enriched.

0 0 Reply
Carol Johns 12 October 2020

Love this poem because it crystallizes the plight of native Americans through the metaphor of Buffalo Bill. By exploiting the weakness of people who drink to forget their status, the poem demonstrates the sad irony of the US government's response to native Americans. The most insidious element of the poem is that Buffalo Bill can absolve his own conscience by claiming that the " Indians" gave everything away of their own volition.

1 0 Reply
Joe Thorpe 20 May 2019

WHY? ! Why would you have a robot read poetry? I am in shock you would damage this poem in this way. Neve have I heard anything and thought, " Wow! This need to be removed from the internet! "

4 1 Reply
grace 12 August 2018

give its significance

1 2 Reply
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