I place you into the fire

I place you into the fire is a book by Rebecca Thomas.

Rebecca Thomas

In Mi'kmaw, three similarly shaped words have drastically different meanings: kesalul means "I love you"; kesa'lul means "I hurt you"; and ke'sa'lul means "I put you into the fire." In spoken-word artist and critically acclaimed author (I'm Finding My Talk) Rebecca Thomas's first poetry collection, readers will feel Thomas's deep love, pain, and frustration as she holds us all to task, along the way mourning the loss of her childhood magic, exploring the realities of growing up off reserve, and offering up a new Creation Story for Canada.

Diverse and probing, I place you into the fire is at once a meditation on navigating life and love as a second-generation Residential School survivor, a lesson in unlearning, and a rallying cry for Indigenous justice, empathy, and equality. A searing collection that embodies the vitality and ferocity of spoken-word poetry. (From Nimbus Publishing)

Rebecca Thomas is a Mi'kmaw writer living in Nova Scotia. She was the Halifax poet laureate from 2016 to 2018. She is also the author of the children's book I'm Finding My Talk, which is a poem responding to the iconic Rita Joe poem  I Lost My Talk.

Interviews with Rebecca Thomas

Not Perfect, by Rebecca Thomas

7 years ago
Duration 3:10
Featured VideoHalifax's poet laureate Rebecca Thomas on the legacy of Edward Cornwallis.

Rebecca Thomas performs ‘A Toast to the Mixes’

6 years ago
Duration 2:26
Featured VideoRebecca Thomas’ poem A Toast to the Mixes is an homage to Indigenous people with mixed ancestry - ‘the halves’ and ‘the mixes’.
Featured VideoStreets, schools and rivers in Halifax are named for the city's founder, Edward Cornwallis. But Rebecca Thomas, the first Mi'kmaq poet laureate of Halifax, is one of many questioning his violent history with Mi'kmaq people.
Featured VideoRebecca Thomas calls out cultural appropriation with poetry; Why Royal Canoe are hand-delivering albums to fans; Gillian Findlay previews the fifth estate's new podcast; Emmanuel Jal's latest venture for peace is a cafe.
Featured VideoGrowing up, Rebecca Thomas always knew her father was Mi'kmaw. But as a child it wasn’t clear what that meant for her - she saw a disconnect between his identity and her own. Thomas describes her journey to understanding her own sense of being Mi'kmaw.
Featured VideoFor the United Nations' International Year of Indigenous Languages, initiatives to strengthen ties between Indigenous people and their languages are being taken up across the world. This week on Unreserved, stories of reclamation and revitalization of Indigenous languages.

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