Subject: Surrounded
From: Christopher W. Thomas (poetlaureate@poetic.com)
Host: 209-150-40-89.s89.tnt1.spg.ma.dialup.rcn.com
Date: Sat June 26, 1999 at 8:55PM

Surrounded


On this date in eighteen hundred seventy-six
Custer, Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull mixed ...
Meeting at Little Bighorn in Montana Territory
Where the United States Cavalry fought bravely

But were outnumbered ten to one by the Sioux
Who annihilated the soldiers and Custer, too
Killing all but one* of the two hundred sixty men
A hopeless engagement, and one not forgotten

Caused by Custer's own miscalculation of strength
And a certain willfullness, for he'd been directed to blend
... His regiment of six hundred and fifty-five troops
With General Terry's forces at the river's loop ...

Where the Bighorn and Little Bighorn Rivers met
In order to prepare a much sounder attack, yet ...
But Custer advanced his troops in three columns
Without knowing the Sioux and Cheyenne were mulling

Encamped together in a mass of thousands ...
Splitting apart in order to surround them ...
Cutting off both of Custer's protective flanks
Destroying the center column and all the ranks

- Tristram

Christopher W. Thomas
written 4pm Sat. 6/26/99
for Friday June 25th, 1999

* The one survivor was a Crow scout.

NB
Crazy Horse was captured on May 6th, 1877
He was killed by a soldier whilst resisting ...

Sitting Bull surrendered after being promised
amnesty in 1881, but spent two years in prison,
before being settled on a reservation. In 1885,
he was allowed to leave in order to tour with
Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West Show, but was
later arrested for instigating unrest on December
15th, 1890. After an attempt was made to rescue
him, he was shot and killed by his captors.

Along with Custer, also killed were four of his family:
Tom and Boston Custer, his two brothers
Colonel Calhoun, his brother-in-law
Colonel Yates, his nephew.

The site of Custer's Last Stand was established
as a National Monument in 1896, initially named
the Custer Battlefield National Monument, renamed
the Little Bighorn National Monument in 1991.