Weaving Sundown in a Scarlet Light: Fifty Poems for Fifty Years

Weaving Sundown in a Scarlet Light: Fifty Poems for Fifty Years

Weaving Sundown in a Scarlet Light: Fifty Poems for Fifty Years

Weaving Sundown in a Scarlet Light: Fifty Poems for Fifty Years


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A magnificent selection of fifty poems to celebrate three-term US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo’s fifty years as a poet.

Over a long, influential career in poetry, Joy Harjo has been praised for her “warm, oracular voice” (John Freeman, Boston Globe) that speaks “from a deep and timeless source of compassion for all” (Craig Morgan Teicher, NPR). Her poems are musical, intimate, political, and wise, intertwining ancestral memory and tribal histories with resilience and love.

In this gemlike volume, Harjo selects her best poems from across fifty years, beginning with her early discoveries of her own voice and ending with moving reflections on our contemporary moment. Generous notes on each poem offer insight into Harjo’s inimitable poetics as she takes inspiration from Navajo horse songs and jazz, reckons with home and loss, and listens to the natural messengers of the earth. As evidenced in this transcendent collection, Joy Harjo’s “poetry is light and elixir, the very best prescription for us in wounded times” (Sandra Cisneros, Millions).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781324036487
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 11/01/2022
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 63,130
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Joy Harjo is a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. She is the author of nine poetry collections and two memoirs, most recently Poet Warrior. The recipient of the 2023 Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, the 2023 Bollingen Prize for American Poetry, and the 2017 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, she lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Table of Contents

Foreword Sandra Cisneros xi

The Last Song 1

Are You Still There? 2

Anchorage 3

For Alva Benson, and for Those Who Have Learned to Speak 5

The Woman Hanging from the Thirteenth-Floor Window 7

Remember 10

New Orleans 11

She Had Some Horses 14

I Give You Back 17

My House Is the Red Earth 19

Grace 20

Deer Dancer 21

For Anna Mae Pictou Aquash, Whose Spirit Is Present Here and in the Dappled Stars 24

Bird 26

Rainy Dawn 28

Santa Fe 29

Eagle Poem 30

The Creation Story 31

A Postcolonial Tale 33

The Dawn Appears with Butterflies 35

Perhaps the World Ends Here 38

A Map to the Next World 40

Emergence 43

The Path to the Milky Way Leads Through Los Angeles 45

Equinox 47

It's Raining in Honolulu 48

When the World as We Knew It Ended 49

For Calling the Spirit Back from Wandering the Earth in Its Human Feet 51

Rahbit Is Up to Tricks 54

No 56

This Morning I Pray for My Enemies 58

Praise the Rain 59

Speaking Tree 60

Fall Song 62

Sunrise 63

Break My Heart 64

Washing My Mother's Body 66

How to Write a Poem in a Time of War 71

Running 75

My Man's Feet 77

Tobacco Origin Story 79

Redbird Love 81

An American Sunrise 83

Frog in a Dry River 84

Prepare 86

The Life of Beauty 88

How Love Blows Through the Trees 90

Sundown Walks to the Edge of the Story 92

Somewhere 94

Without 97

Notes 99

Acknowledgments 125

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