In order to live we have to make our own mirrors.Ojibwe poet Marcie Rendon—from her introduction to the collection of poetry by four Anishinaabe writers entitled Nitaawichige
If fish tell you something, listen. It's not often water speaks; rarely do we practice lowering an ear, catch the business of swimming. Here, we are the charging and refraction; light stabbing deeper as you slice with thumb and index, body aligned to the nests of Northerns where anything could happen in these lives. But it's easier to stand shoreline throwing ropes out to the drowning bold, cord-words absent of song and wild talk. Instead, tread until your lungs [End Page 125] burn, you cough and spit water; scull your hands with the vigor of a river and never tell anything but a really good story.
Molly McGlennen is mixed-blood (Anishinaabe, French, Irish), born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is presently the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Native American Studies at Vassar College; in fall 2008, she will begin her position as Assistant Professor of English at Vassar. She received her PhD in Native American studies from University of California, Davis, in 2005, with her dissertation work on contemporary indigenous women’s poetry. She also earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College in 1998. Her poetry has appeared in such journals as Frontiers, Shenandoah, and Atlantis and in the anthology Genocide of the Mind: New Native American Writing.