The Huron Farewell

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Posted by Miss Gaylee Cooper on March 22, 1999 at 11:08:33:

James Fenimore Cooper was often criticized for his overly sentimental portrayal of Indian culture. However, recent archaeological excavations north of Schroon Lake in Upstate New York have turned up evidence of hitherto unsuspected tenderness in the Huron psyche which completely vindicates Cooper's views and those of the more perceptive anqalysts of the relationship between Magua and Alice Munro. Inscribed on a slab of birch bark, this Huron song was obviously the inspiration for the 1970's recording "Softly, As I Leave You".

Magua's Song
(The Huron Farewell)

Scalpless, I will leave you scalpless.
Long before the dawn, I'll take your hair, and I'll be gone.

Gentle, I'm so sentimental,
Though I really yearn within my heart to see you burn.

After all the years, I can't bear you, dear, at all,
So softly, as you slumber there -
It seems only fair -
I will take your hair.

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