I Have Not Signed a Treaty with the United States Government


Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 5.12.22 PMBy Chrystos

Chrystos was born in California in 1946. She is of mixed-blood ancestry, but identifies with her father, who was of Menominee ancestry. Chrystos is a self-educated writer as well as an artist who designs the covers of her own books. Her work as a Native land and treaty rights activist has been widely recognized and the political aspect is an essential part of her writing even though she refuses to be taken as a “voice” of Native women or as a “spiritual leader.” She is the winner of the Audre Lorde International Poetry Competition in 1994 and of the Sappho Award of Distinction from the Astraea National Lesbian Action Foundation in 1995. Chrystos fights the victimization and colonization of minority people in terms of language.

Read the poem (PDF).