I’d probably end up as one of those sad-assed ghosts that never accepts death and wanders back and forth on this stupid boulevard full of nail & beauty shops, convenience and dollar stores, black barber shops, fast food, chicken eateries, drive-thrus, bars and bistros, the Middle Eastern Market—
And there are some hard truths. Most Buffalo elders notch their winters with salt, Vicks, and canned trout. They grouse about snowbirds and higher taxes. You can get mugged with ease on Clinton and Sycamore Street. Some folks still wonder why there’s plenty of coloreds around.
Because winter is a cataclysm for creatures like us. We, the green and leafy masses, unfit for city life, need warmth. We can’t create sweetness alone and in the dark, it has to be drawn out of us with rich soil, sweet breezes, and rays of light.
The year was 1965, and while the relocation programs had kind of become used up—that is, officially unpopular with program developers—the push now was to somehow develop the existing reservations and keep Indians at home.