War and History Fiction posted September 17, 2011

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Indiana lore and history

Tecumseh's War

by Realist101

"The trees have eyes ... . They watch, and they speak of what is to come. So I ask you ... sit ... listen to them whisper their warning. I, Tecumseh, say to you. Look, and see. Before the last moon in the season of harvest, the winds will turn strong. The people who do not belong here, who come to our lands, they bring changes that will take our freedoms away. On the winds blow death and much unhappiness. They seek to destroy us; our way of life, our culture and they will steal our land. We must fight them. This is our home. We will not let them take it."

He stood then, tall, commanding and in the firelight, fierce looking. The braves in the hut leapt to their feet, in unison, shouting agreement and vows of war. Tecumseh held up a hand.

"We must be vigilant. Do not let down your guard. Listen to the wind. Watch the deer and the wolf. They know, and will warn. When the winds come, let the trees take the brunt of it and we will stand as brothers in the storms. We will fight for what is ours. We will let Mother Earth help us defeat the invaders. We will hold celebrations of victory after the whites have been defeated."

Then, quietly, they dispersed. The first people knew that their world was soon to change and it was a sobering fact. Like a flood, the white man had begun to overpower the region. His influence strong, his weapons deadly. The Shawnee would not go down without a fight.

In the night, Tecumseh met secretly with his brother. They spoke quietly for hours. There would be no more truces, no more negotiations. The tide was going to be turned in favor of the Shawnee. And the other nations who had gathered here.

The trees spoke to the breezes of the fight to come. And the brothers slept, with the voices on the wind singing songs of sacrifice.

Summer turned to the chill of autumn. The people worked to prepare for winter as they gathered corn and went in search of shelter. The cliffs of the riverbanks were warm, the caves and hillsides safe haven for the families and their children. Deer were plentiful, and the bellies of the tribes were full. Soon, the cold moved in and with it, the crystalline snows. Tecumseh stayed vigilant. Word came with carriers that the whites were near. Winter would not necessarily be a tranquil time. He watched the trees. And listened to the wind. And he knew ... the fighting was near at hand. He spoke to the warriors of all surrounding tribes, and they prepared. They waited and grew anxious for the battles. They spoke of the leader, Harrison. The white chief, the one who led the invasion. He would be the first to die.

And so it was, in the early fall of 1813, the clash of Tecumseh and Harrison's army raged in Chatham, Ontario. Blood spilled, as the Shawnee, the Algonquin and others raged against the white armies. The Prophet waited, he had told of the Great Victories. And he was right. Tecumseh slaughtered Harrison and his army. The battle lasted for days. Now, the blood of the whites soaked red, the deep snow of the basin. The winds of change had blown in the favor of the original people and they danced in victory.

But when the sun moved into the season of new growth, a different wind came. It twisted, churned, and roared across the valleys, but left little damage. The strong trees of the land held tight their roots. Just like the original people had. Tecumseh sat on the cliff with his brother and wrote on the skins his words. And he stands to this day, as the great chief of the Indiana Territory. The Shawnee chiefs words ring forever true-and they speak to all ...

"Live your life, that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about his religion. Respect others in their views and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life, seek to make your life long and of service to other people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.
Always give a word, or sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, or even a stranger when in a lonely place.
Show respect for all people, but grovel to none.
When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself.
Touch not, the poisonous firewater that makes wise ones turn to fools and robs their spirit its vision.
When your turn comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives in a different way. Sing your death song and die like a hero going home."

The song of the wolf tells the tale of Tecumseh. And if you listen, you will hear.

Native American Fiction writing prompt entry
Writing Prompt
Write a short story. The topic is: Natures Fury. Minimum length 700 words. Maximum Length 4,000 words.

The topic can be incorporated in anything you want as long as its Native American. What I mean by that is write a short story in the days of Native Americans with that topic. Also, start off your story with the sentence: The trees have eyes...
You can change the punctuation to whatever, but can't change the sentence itself.
Good luck.


What fun, to change history. In real life, Tecumseh died on Oct. 5th, 1813 in Ontario. The quotes in this are his own words. But Just think of how things might be, had the Natives won the day. Thank you for reading and reviewing this and to Picasa for the photo. Not sure of word count?
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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