Wild West

RIDING TOWARD A BLUE VISION

The strange creature that had come to drink was blue. To the Cheyenne man watching at a lake in what is today eastern Wyoming, its color was charged with meaning and recalled an ancient prophecy.

As John Stands in Timber recounted in , a 1967 memoir and history of his people, an early Cheyenne holy man named Sweet Medicine had spoken of such a creature while warning his people of things to come. He’d cautioned them to avoid a powerful, light-skinned people who clipped their hair short and spoke no Indian tongue. The buffalo would disappear, he’d said, and the Cheyennes would learn to eat a new kind of horned animal, one with a slick hide, split hooves and long tail.

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