Executive Order 9066
©Linda Allen 1989

The order came down in the middle of March
THESE ARE OUR FRIENDS AND OUR NEIGHBORS
All Japanese persons from Bainbridge must part
LET JUSTICE FLOW LIKE A RIVER

The Woodwards spoke out in the Bainbridge Review
THESE ARE OUR FRIENDS AND OUR NEIGHBORS
If they're coming for them, they'll be coming for you
LET JUSTICE FLOW LIKE A RIVER

This Island's been home since eighteen eighty-three
To Japanese famililes now called enemy

They had 10 days to pack or to sell all they owned
To leave strawberry farms, small businesses, homes

Over two hundred citizens crowded the dock
And soldiers with bayonets guarded their flock

They were herded like sheep on the ferry that day
And the tears and the shame left us few words to say

To Manzanar Camp they were taken at last
Ten thousand people in a square mile of dust

From the Camp they wrote letters to the Bainbridge Review
"Sam and Kay just got married - how goes it with you?"

The letters flowed back and forth over the miles
Just friends gone away who'd be back in awhile

Young men from the camp joined the army and fought
While their families were left on the desert to rot

After 30 long months they were told to go home
There were businesses ruined and farms overgrown


But many an Islander helped out a friend
And cried as they welcomed them back home again

So here's to the Woodwards and others who dared
Here's to the Island with the courage to care

For the sake of the children the story we tell
We must watch out for cracks in the liberty bell


Notes:
Jerry Elfindahl of Bainbridge Island first told me the stories
which inspired this song. The exhibit "Kadomo No Tame Ne (For The
Sake Of The Children)" brought it all home.