James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

September 4


By Ernest McGaffey (1861– )

  • Chief of the Apaches. Captured by General Miles on Sept. 4, 1886.

  • BESIDE that tent and under guard

    In majesty alone he stands

    As some chained eagle, broken-winged

    With eyes that gleam like smouldering brands;

    A savage face, streaked o’er with paint,

    And coal-black hair in unkempt mane,

    Thin, cruel lips, set rigidly—

    A red Apache Tamerlane.

    As restless as the desert winds,

    Yet here he stands like carven stone,

    His raven locks by breezes moved

    And backward o’er his shoulders blown;

    Silent, yet watchful as he waits

    Robed in his strange, barbaric guise,

    While here and there go searchingly

    The cat-like wanderings of his eyes.

    The eagle feather on his head

    Is dull with many a bloody stain,

    While darkly on his lowering brow

    Forever rests the mark of Cain;

    Have you but seen a tiger caged

    And sullen through his barriers glare?

    Mark well his human prototype,

    The fierce Apache fettered there.