These found poems are drawn from interviews with elderly citizens of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation recorded in 1937-38 as part of the Indian-Pioneer History Project sponsored by the federal Works Progress Administration and archived at the Oklahoma Historical Society and the University of Oklahoma. You can read more about this project at Tribal College and Reckoning. —Eds.

the green corn dance is a harvest celebration handed down from generation to generation it is usually held in the summer during the harvest of corn a person must not eat corn until he has celebrated or he will get sick the date is set to clean the cuko rakko big house dance ground on the date set they gather and sweep the whole dancing ground which is a circle about thirty feet in diameter the ashes where the fire was built during past year is swept up and cleaned the campers moved in day before the celebration • the first day the men drink red root mēkko hoyvnēcv and sit under the arbors they drink red root and vomit all day to clean out the system that is before eating the corn and the women drink the red root and vomit or some just wash their faces with it in doing this they turn toward the east to vomit easier during the afternoon the medicine man starts scratching every man who participates with an animals tooth or a needle on the forearm four times skin deep so it will bleed during the evening a fire is built by a picked man who had taken part in the occasion when the fire is built they look on then that man picks up the coals and hands them to the women to build the fires in the camp houses four ears of roasting corn are laid on the fire pointing north east south and west for feeding the fire or celebrating then the men who drank medicine all day goes to the river to swim or wash the impurities from their bodies after the bath they come in and eat • the men dance and the women also dance turtle shells are used by the women in the dance a crock of red root is set aside for the visitors to drink or wash their faces the dance is all through the night the fire is kept up different leaders lead the dance it is a pleasure and enjoyment all night and play ball next day Charlie Snakeya, b. 1907

JAMES TREAT is the author of Around the Sacred Fire: Native Religious Activism in the Red Power Era and the editor of several volumes of native literature. His essays and poems have appeared in American Indian Culture and Research Journal, American Quarterly, Contemporary Verse 2, Cultural Survival Quarterly, Fourth Genre, Indian Country Today, Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment, Muscogee Nation News, Native Americas, Orion, Studies in American Indian Literature, Tribal College Journal, Verbatim Found Poetry, and other academic and literary journals. Treat is an enrolled citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. More information about his work is available at his website.