Nightwood. Oct. 2021. 128p. ISBN 9780889713925. pap. $18.95. POETRY
Hunt, who is Cree and a member of Wapsewsipi (Swan River First Nation) in Treaty Eight territory in northern Alberta, is an assistant professor of Indigenous literatures at the University of British Columbia and has published award-nominated children’s literature. It’s not surprising, then, that this first poetry collection is both lucidly instructive and storyoriented in its steady-eyed exploration of his community. What results is both celebration (“the translation for genius/ in Cree is my kôhkom muttering in her sleep”) and bitter reportage on ongoing oppression (“colonialism is waiting/ eighteen hours in a cell/ when you desperately/ need a hospital”), which blend seamlessly to create an affecting work.

VERDICT Well-crafted poetry that adds admirably to the growing body of Indigenous literature; for most readers.
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