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Johnny Cash
 You're here » Music Lyrics Index » C » Johnny Cash » Bitter Tears: Ballads of the American Indian » Drums Lyrics

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Johnny Cash
Album: Bitter Tears: Ballads of the American Indian
Track: Drums

Drums Lyrics

(Peter La Farge)
© '63 Lazy LF Publishing, BMI

From the Indian reservation to the governmental school
Well they're goin' to educate me to the white men's Golden Rule
And I'm learning very quickly for I've learned to be ashamed
And I come when they call Billy though I've got an Indian name
And there are drums beyond the mountain Indian drums that you can't hear
There are drums beyond the mountain and they're getting mighty near

And when they think that they'd changed me cut my hair to meet their needs
Will they think I'm white or Indian quarter blood or just half breed
Let me tell you Mr teacher when you say you'll make me right
In five hundred years of fighting not one Indian turned white
And there are drums...

Well you thought that I knew nothing when you brought me here to school
Just another empty Indian just America's first fool
But now I can tell you stories that are burnt and dried and old
But in the shadow of their telling walks the thunder proud and bold
And there are drums...

Long Pine and Sequoia Handsome Lake and Sitting Bull
There's Magnus Colorado with his sleeves so red and full
Crazy Horse the legend those who bit off Custer's soul
They are dead yet they are living with the great Geronimo
And there are drums...

Well you may teach me this land's hist'ry but we taught it to you first
We broke your hearts and bent your journeys broken treaties left us cursed
Even now you have to cheat us even though you this us tame
In our losing we found proudness in your winning you found shame
And there are drums...

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