The Secret Powers of Naming

$17.00 each

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In surgically sharp word-pictures, this fearless storyteller unflinchingly names the absurd realities of life as an Indian woman living on colonized land.

Available in paperback only.  Sara Littlecrow-Russell (Anishinaabe/Han-Naxi Métis), The Secret Powers of Naming. 2006.

Let it be said right here that Littlecrow-Russell will probably never be accused of mincing words or allowing a metaphor to trail into oblivion. In surgically sharp word-pictures, this fearless storyteller unflinchingly names the absurd realities of life as an Indian woman living on colonized land. Such as when someone told her he wanted to see “Indian ruins”—“So I drove him/ Past HUD houses and blood drops,/ And a three-year-old girl huffing glue/ From a brown paper bag./ We came to a place/ Where the earth lay torn and scarred,/ Littered with shards of pottery/ And bits of ancestral bone./ ‘At last,’ he exclaimed,/ Real Indian ruins!’” Such as her poem for Annie Mae Pictou Aquash, the Mi’kmaq warrior “Found crumpled in the Dakota snow/ Like the body of a reservation dog…” No, wannabe readers seeking colorful dancers, dream interpretations and crystal-woogly visions will have to look elsewhere. Also no descendants of defeated warriors building bridges to understanding.