Song For Leonard Peltier

loan me a minute, let me borrow your ear
and I’ll sing you a song about Leonard Peltier
he’s gone so long in a federal jail
the innocent victim of a tangled tail

in South Dakota where the fear was thrown
where the presidents watched from a mountain of stone
and they said all people are free to roam
there was a struggle for freedom in the Indian home

how many have gone before
and tell me how many more
must be lost to the Indian wars

the company spoke to the high command
“we need the deeds to the Indian land
to dig for oil and uranium ore
maybe have to start a little Indian war”

the orders came from way on high
and it was a job for the FBI
“it won’t be hard, all we’ll have to do
is cause a little trouble and follow it through”

in Oglalla where the spirit did dwell
it was a time they remember well.
there were women and children gathered there
when the wind blew a warning through the whispering air

and Leonard Peltier was one of those
who came to the call when the time arose
and dangerous strangers were prowlin’ around
bringin’ trouble to the reservation ground

and that was when the agents made their play
in a gunshot battle on a deadly day
and three men died in Lakota land
two FBI and an Indian man


Joe Stuntz was a man that died that day
but the eyes of the law didn’t see it that way
all they cared about was their own kind
gonna get somebody for a capitol crime

the charge was set for homicide,
but Leonard got away to the Canada side
where he lived for a while in the northern town
till they came up and got him and the brought him back down

the judge and the jury, they both agreed
two times murder in the first degree
they pounded the gavel and they rang on the bell
two times life in a federal cell

citations came from Washington,
congratulations on a job well done.
two agents gone is a mighty price,
but if you want somethin’ bad you gotta sacrifice

they took Leonard Peltier off away in chains
all of those years to suffer in pain
oh but all of those years makes a warrior strong
and the struggle of the people goes on


and so it’s been since days of old
when Custer died for a mountain of gold
but times have changed and passed him by
he’s been replaced by the FBI

oh, it’s all so easy to weep and moan
for a warfare fought so far from home
you can preach of peace from a righteous stand
while they struggle for peace on the Indian land

when Joe Stuntz was lowered down
the winds did blow with a mighty sound
and the answer came in the driving rain
this man will not have died in vain

for the hollow power of the lock and key
ain’t nothin’ to the power of the raging sea
or the lightning strikes in the angry skies
that puts the power into people’s eyes

oh, the weather is building to a mighty storm
and the words in the wind that come to warn
are once more spoken to your ear
only this time the name is Leonard Peltier