March 3, 2024:

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Deaf Heaven

Deaf Heaven

Deaf Heaven

As the title suggests, this new collection of poetry from Garry Gottfriedson of the Secwepemc (Shuswap) Nation deals with the ways in which the world is deaf to the problems First Nations people face in Canada today. Gottfriedson examines such issues as the Truth and Reconciliation movements as well as the missing and murdered Aboriginal women. The poems focus not only on postcolonial issues but also on First Nations internal problems. Although the book speaks of age-old themes, it explores them through fresh modern eyes offering thought-provoking and engaging prespectives. Eloquent and witty, these poems are power-packed with imagery that uncovers the raw politics of race. There is nothing polite about them. While frequently offering a bleak view of present-day First Nation conditions, the poems also provide a sense of optimism: “the hope/that the coldest day in winter/will promise serenity in spring.”

About the author

Garry Gottfriedson

Garry Gottfriedson

Poet, teacher, and rancher Garry Gottfriedson is a member of the Secwepemc First Nation. Born into a renowned rodeo and ranching family in Kamloops, British Columbia, Gottfriedson earned an MA in education from Simon Fraser University; he also studied creative writing at the Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

His works include Clinging to Bone (2019); Chaos Inside Thunderstorms (2014); Skin Like Mine (2010); Whiskey Bullets (2006), a collection of cowboy and Indian heritage poems and a finalist for the Anskohk Aboriginal Award; Glass Tepee (2002), which was nominated for a First People’s Publishing Award; In Honor of Our Grandmothers: Imprints of Cultural Survival (1994); and 100 Years of Contact (1990). He is also the author of the children’s book Painted Pony (2005).

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