The Red Files

Lisa Bird-Wilson

The Red Files

This debut poetry collection from Lisa Bird-Wilson reflects on the legacy of the residential school system: the fragmentation of families and histories, with blows that resonate through the generations.

Inspired by family and archival sources, Bird-Wilson assembles scraps of a history torn apart by colonial violence. The collection takes its name from the federal government's complex organizational structure of residential schools archives, which are divided into "black files" and "red files." In vignettes as clear as glass beads, her poems offer affection to generations of children whose presence within the historic record is ghostlike, anonymous and ephemeral. (From Harbour Publishing)


You sowed these seeds

and you

apologize for having done


thing that is still in the


From The Red Files by Lisa Bird-Wilson ©2016. Published by Harbour Publishing.