Song Lyrics

Lakota

by Joni Mitchell

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I am Lakota!
Lakota!
Looking at money man
Diggin' the deadly quotas
Out of balance
Out of hand
We want the land!
Lay down the reeking ore
Don't you hear the shrieking in the trees?
Everywhere you touch the earth she's sore
Every time you skin her all things weep
Your money mocks us
Restitution what good can it do?
Kennelled in metered boxes
Red dogs in debt to you

I am Lakota!
Lakota!
Fighting among ourselves
All we can say with one whole heart
Is we won't sell
No we'll never sell
We want the land!
The lonely coyote calls
In the woodlands footprints of the deer
In the barrooms poor drunk bastard falls
In the courtrooms deaf ears sixty years
You think we're sleeping but
Quietly like rattlesnakes and stars
We have seen the trampled rainbows
In the smoke of cars

I am Lakota
Brave
Sun pity me
I am Lakota
Broken
Moon pity me
I am Lakota
Grave
Shadows stretching
Lakota
Oh pity me
I am Lakota
Weak
Grass pity me
I am Lakota
Faithful
Rocks pity me
I am Lakota
Meek
Standing water
Lakota
Oh pity me

I am Lakota!
Lakota!
Standing on sacred land
We never sold these Black Hills
To the missile heads
To the power plants
We want the land!
The bullet and the fence broke Lakota
The black coats and the booze broke Lakota
Courts that circumvent choke Lakota
Nothing left to lose
Tell me grandfather
You spoke the fur and feather tongues
Do you hear the whimpering waters
When the tractors come?

Sun pity me
Mother earth
Mother
Moon pity me
Father sky
Father
Shadows
Stretching on the forest floor
Mother earth
Oh pity me
Father sky
Father
Grass pity me
Mother earth
Mother
Rocks pity me
Father sky
Father
Water
Standing in a wakan manner
Mother earth
Oh pity me

© 1988; Crazy Crow Music

Footnotes to Lakota

In the 'Joni would really think this is cool' department, here's a translation of the song into the Lakotan language. Thanks to Caroline Humbert.

MaLákȟota
Lakȟóta
Mázaska wičháša kiŋ ablúta
Wóiyowaža kiŋ hená tʼeyá čha kʼé
Haháyela
Akášpeya
Makȟá kiŋ uŋčhíŋpi
Wasutá kiŋ ȟuŋwíŋmna čha égnakape!
Čháŋ eyá šičáhowaya kiŋ hená nayáȟʼuŋpi šni he?
Makȟá kiŋ eyápatȟaŋpi háŋtaŋš tuktétu kiŋ oyásʼiŋ yazáŋ
Iyéna háluzapi iyúha čhéye
Mázaska nitȟáwa kiŋ uŋkáiȟaȟapi
Tókheȟčiŋ tȟoúŋkič’uŋpi kta só?
Šuŋȟpúŋkothi él thiwíčhakhiyapi
Šuŋka šá kiŋ hená iníčazopi

MaLákȟota
Lakȟóta
Uŋkíčhizapi
Hečéla čhaŋtíyagleya uŋkéyapi uŋkókihipi
Wawíyopȟeuŋyaŋpi kte šni
Hiyá, tóhaŋni wawíyopȟeuŋyaŋpi kte šni
Makȟá kiŋ uŋčhíŋpi
Sungmánitu iyókišiče kiŋ hó
Čhaŋmáhel tȟáȟča oyé kiŋ hená
Owáyatke thípi kiŋ él, itómni sʼa úŋšike kiŋ hiŋȟpáye
Yasúpi thípi kiŋ él, núŋǧe anáǧoptaŋpi šni, waníyetu wikčémna šákpe ópta
Uŋkíštiŋmapi kečháŋnipi éyaš,
Atáŋsʼe siŋtéȟla na wičháȟpi sʼe
Iyéčhikiŋyaŋka šóta kiŋ mahél
Wígmuŋke naótʼoze kiŋ waŋúŋyaŋkapi

MaLákȟota
Čhaŋtématʼiŋze
Wí, úŋšimala yo !
MaLákȟota
Čhaŋtémayazaŋ
Haŋwí, úŋšimala yo !
MaLákȟota
Naǧí kiŋ wičháȟapi kiŋ ahíŋȟpayape ló
Lakȟóta
Úŋšimala yo !
MaLákȟota
Mahúŋkešni
Pȟeží, úŋšimala yo !
MaLákȟota
Wačhíŋyewaye
Ínyaŋ, úŋšimala po !
MaLákȟota
Mawáȟwala
Mní kiŋ ablákela
Lákȟota
Úŋšimala yo !

MaLákȟota!
Lakȟóta
Makȟóčhe wakȟáŋ kiŋ él naúŋžiŋpi
Tóhaŋni Pahá Sápa kiŋ lená wíyopȟeuŋyaŋpi šni
Wípȟe napsílyapi kiŋ
Na owákaǧe wakȟáŋgli kiŋ
Makȟočhe kiŋ uŋčhíŋpi
Sú na inátȟake uŋ Lakȟóta kiŋ čhaŋté iháŋgwičhayayapi
Ógle Sápe kiŋ épi na mnišíča kiŋ é čha Lakȟóta kiŋ čhaŋté iháŋgwičhaye ló
Wayásu wičháša kiŋ kaná wičhóȟ'aŋ kiŋ yuȟéyapȟapi na Lakȟóta kiŋ wičháyukaȟkaǧapi
Táku uŋyúhapi kiŋ iyúhaha henála
Tȟuŋkášila, wómakiyaka yo!
Híŋ na wíyaka iyápi kiŋ waéha tkȟá
Bloíyublu kiŋ kaná ú čháŋna
Wakpá eyá záŋgzaŋg kalúza kiŋ hená nayáȟʼuŋ he?

Wí, úŋšimala yo !
Iná Makȟá
Iná
Haŋwí, úŋšimala yo!
Até Maȟpíya
Até
Čhúŋwaŋča makȟá kiŋ akáŋl naǧí kiŋ ahíŋȟpayapi
Iná Makȟá
Úŋšimala yo!
Até Maȟpíya
Até
Pȟeží, úŋšimala yo !
Iná Makȟá
Iná
Iná Makȟá
Até Maȟpíya
Até
Mní kiŋ wakȟáŋ ablákela
Iná Makȟá
Úŋšimala yo!

Guitar Transcriptions of Lakota

Lakota has been recorded by 2 other artists

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