In this Book

summary

“I build this story like my lair. One willow, / a rib at a time”
— “The Crooked Good”

Since 1990, Sky Dancer Louise Bernice Halfe’s work has stood out as essential testimony to Indigenous experiences within the ongoing history of colonialism and the resilience of Indigenous storytellers. Sôhkêyihta includes searing poems, written across the expanse of Halfe’s career, aimed at helping readers move forward from the darkness into a place of healing.

Halfe’s own afterword is an evocative meditation on the Cree word sôhkêyihta: Have courage. Be brave. Be strong. She writes of coming into her practice as a poet and the stories, people, and experiences that gave her courage and allowed her to construct her “lair.” She also reflects on her relationship with nêhiyawêwin, the Cree language, and the ways in which it informs her relationships and poetics.

The introduction by David Gaertner situates Halfe’s writing within the history of whiteness and colonialism that works to silence and repress Indigenous voices. Gaertner pays particular attention to the ways in which Halfe addresses, incorporates, and pushes back against silence, and suggests that her work is an act of bearing witness – what Kwagiulth scholar Sarah Hunt identifies as making Indigenous lives visible.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. i-iv
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Foreword
  2. Brian Henderson and Neil Besner
  3. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Biographical Note
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Introduction
  2. David Gaertner
  3. pp. xi-xx
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  1. From Bear Bones & Feathers
  1. Crying for Voice
  2. p. 21
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  1. The Residential School Bus
  2. pp. 22-25
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  1. Thieves
  2. pp. 26-27
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  1. Returning
  2. pp. 28-29
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  1. der poop
  2. p. 30
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  1. Pâhkahkos
  2. pp. 31-32
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  1. Nôhkom, Medicine Bear
  2. pp. 33-34
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  1. Body Politics
  2. p. 35
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  1. Valentine Dialogue
  2. pp. 36-38
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  1. From Blue Marrow
  1. pawâkan
  2. pp. 39-44
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  1. I sit by the window
  2. pp. 45-50
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  1. nôhkom âtayôhkan
  2. pp. 51-52
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  1. Forgive me father
  2. pp. 53-57
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  1. kayâs-âcimowin nôtokwêsiw wîhtam
  2. pp. 58-60
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  1. Born in a Dent Grandmudder
  2. pp. 61-62
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  1. Keeper of the Stories
  2. pp. 63-64
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  1. Ram Woman
  2. pp. 65-67
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  1. From The Crooked Good
  1. Listen: To the Story
  2. pp. 68-74
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  1. ê-kwêskît – Turn-Around Woman
  2. pp. 75-76
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  1. The Tracker
  2. pp. 77-78
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  1. Everyday Is a Story
  2. pp. 79-81
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  1. Excavating
  2. pp. 82-83
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  1. Horse Liniment and the Boys
  2. p. 84
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  1. White Island
  2. pp. 85-86
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  1. In The Darkness of the Rolling Head
  2. p. 87
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  1. From ARC Poetry Magazine
  1. Antelope Canyon, Arizona
  2. p. 88
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  1. From Burning in This Midnight Dream
  1. Dedication to the Seventh Generation
  2. p. 89
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  1. Burning in This Midnight Dream
  2. p. 90
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  1. The Reserve Went Silent
  2. p. 91
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  1. Con Game
  2. p. 92
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  1. His Name Was Boy
  2. p. 93
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  1. Sentinels
  2. pp. 94-95
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  1. misasiniy – large rock
  2. p. 96
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  1. ospwâkan – the pipe
  2. p. 97
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  1. The Quandry
  2. p. 98
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  1. From The Malahat Review
  1. “it was a pure”
  2. p. 99
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  1. God of nightmares
  2. p. 100
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  1. Afterword, Sky Dancer Louise Bernice Halfe
  2. pp. 101-106
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  1. Cree Glossary
  2. pp. 107-110
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  1. Acknowledgements
  2. pp. 111-116
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781771123501
Print ISBN
9781771123495
MARC Record
OCLC
1031049594
Pages
88
Launched on MUSE
2018-04-13
Language
English
Open Access
N
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