Monday, June 8, 2009

Native Poet Laureate

Posted By on Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 5:31 PM

From the Paradise Post -- over yonder by Chico -- we learn that the woman who is "the poet of the Hupa Tribe" is also now the poet laureate for all of the California Native American tribes.

She's 85-year-old Arline Beryl Lawrence, and the Post says she was honored at the recent Ishi Celebration in Oroville. Lawrence lives in Magalia, in the same region, and according to the Post has written three books of poetry and a CD of poetry called Gently Touching on the Life of Yahi-Ishi.

A search of the 'net scuffs up evidence that Lawrence also has been Bigfoot's muse, having published a collection of poems and short stories in 1987 called Big Foot Country: Big Foot in Poems and Prose.

But, drat, no Ishi or Bigfoot poems could be found. She does, however, belong to the California Writers Club's Berkeley Branch, which has an address for her where you can order her CD.

And here's a link to a couple of poems from another section of the Post. Below is a snippet from one of them, Poppy Seeds, which whether she intended it or not makes one want to know more about Lawrence's own bird-flown past:

Variant golds, blown by fickle winds,

            carried by birds,

       spill in unlikely places.

 

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Heidi Walters

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Heidi Walters worked as a staff writer at the North Coast Journal from 2005 to 2015.

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