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Marching with King

When Bruchac was busy doing his part in the civil rights movement"like taking part in sit ins and marching in Washington"he was also writing poems about the issues of the time.

"I was very much into the anti-war movement, Native American rights, civil rights, prisoner rights; I've been involved with those issues most of my adult life," said Bruchac.

More recently, Bruchac wrote a song about his experience marching alongside not only King, but Jesse Jackson, Marlon Brando and other key civil rights players.

"The march started when James Meredith was ambushed and shot on his way walking across Mississippi. I went down on a charter bus from Cornell University for three days we marched across Mississippi ending up in Jackson," said Bruchac. "I marched next to Marlon Brando for six hours one day, which was fascinating."

Bruchac said although he didn't get to talk to King for as long as he may have liked, it was still a once in a lifetime experience that he's happy to share.

"He was being interviewed by a dozen people at the same time. I'm just one voice and am happy I got to spend a little time with Martin Luther King and see him at his informal best," said Bruchac. "Just walking with the people and being another person."

His time was cut short because Bruchac was a water carrier, running up and down the line of marchers making sure people didn't die of dehydration. That's just another way he was proud to help as they demonstrated under that "boiling hot Mississippi sun."

Bruchac will present as part of a program in the Community Room of the library from 3 to 4:30 p.m. which will also include words and presentations by Mayor Scott Johnson, Saratoga Springs Supervisor Joanne Yepsen, Kendall Jeter and Bishop Arnold Byrd. From 2 to 2:45 p.m. in the Children's Room, there will be stories and crafts in the spirit of the day and from 3 to 4 p.m. in the Susman Room, teenagers will can participate in a moderated discussion on how to deal with bullying based on the philosophy and principles of King.

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