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 The Never Ending Trail
by Del "Abe" Jones

               We whites honor the "Hermitage"
               And the man who once lived there -
               But, that leader of our Nation
               Was cruel, unjust, unfair -

               He ordered the removal
               Of the Cherokee from their land
               And forced them on a trek
               That the Devil must have planned -

               One thousand miles of misery -
               Of pain and suffering -
               Because greed of the white man
               Could not even wait till spring -

               We should bow our heads in shame
               Even unto this day
               About "The Trail Of Tears"
               And those who died along the way.

               It was October, eighteen thirty-eight
               When seven thousand troops in blue
               Began the story of the "Trail"
               Which, so sadly, is so true -

               Jackson ordered General Scott
               To rout the Indian from their home -
               The "Center Of The World" they loved -
               The only one they'd known -

               The Braves working in the fields
               Arrested, placed in a stockade -
               Women and children dragged from home
               In the bluecoats shameful raid -

               Some were prodded with bayonets
               When, they were deemed to move too slow
               To where the Sky was their blanket
               And the cold Earth, their pillow -
               In one home a Babe had died
               Sometime in the night before -
               And women mourning, planning burial
               Were cruelly herded out the door -

               In another, a frail Mother -
               Papoose on back and two in tow
               Was told she must leave her home
               Was told that she must go -

               She uttered a quiet prayer -
               Told the old family dog good-bye -
               Then, her broken heart gave out
               And she sank slowly down to die -

               Chief Junaluska witnessed this -
               Tears streaming down his face -
               Said if he could have known this
               It would have never taken place -

               For, at the battle of Horse Shoe
               With five hundred Warriors, his best -
               Helped Andrew Jackson win that battle
               And lay thirty-three Braves to rest -

               And the Chief drove his tomahawk
               Through a Creek Warrior's head
               Who was about to kill Jackson -
               But whose life was saved, instead -

               Chief John Ross knew this story
               And once sent Junaluska to plead -
               Thinking Jackson would listen to
               This Chief who did that deed -

               But, Jackson was cold, indifferent
               To the one he owed his life to
               Said, "The Cherokee's fate is sealed -
               There's nothing, I can do."

               Washington, D.C. had decreed
               They must be moved Westward -
               And all their pleas and protests
               To this day still go unheard.

               On November, the seventeenth
               Old Man Winter reared his head -
               And freezing cold, sleet and snow
               Littered that trail with the dead

               On one night, at least twenty-two
               Were released from their torment
               To join that Great Spirit in the Sky
               Where all good souls are sent -

               Many humane, heroic stories
               Were written 'long the way -
               A monument, for one of them -
               Still stands until this day -

               It seems one noble woman
               It was Chief Ross' wife -
               Gave her blanket to a sick child
               And in so doing, gave her life -

               She is buried in an unmarked grave-
               Dug shallow near the "Trail" -
               Just one more tragic ending
               In this tragic, shameful tale -

               Mother Nature showed no mercy
               Till they reached the end of the line
               When that fateful journey ended
               On March twenty-sixth, eighteen thirty-nine.

               Each mile of this infamous "Trail"
               Marks the graves of four who died -
               Four thousand poor souls in all
               Marks the shame we try to hide -

               You still can hear them crying
               Along "The Trail Of Tears"
               If you listen with your heart
               And not with just your ears.

The Never Ending Trail was written by Del "Abe" Jones and appears in his book, The World, War, Freedom, and More. Used with permission of the author. To purchase the book (US9.95), or to give the author your comments, please contact him at:  Also, visit Abe's website at , you won't regret it.

For further information on the Trail of Tears go to:

The Cherokee Trail of Tears - 1838-1839

Trail of Tears Map