Full Circle by Catherine Lafferty
2017 CBC Poetry Prize longlist
Catherine Lafferty has made the 2017 CBC Poetry Prize longlist for Full Circle.
Catherine Lafferty is a single mother of two children and a member of the Yellowknives Dene First Nation, where she serves as a Council member. She was raised primarily by her grandparents who taught her to be respectful of the land and to practice and appreciate her traditional Dene culture. Catherine advocates tirelessly for Indigenous justice, prosperity and wellness in the north. Her hobbies include writing, creating music and spending time with family and friends.
Entry in five-ish words
A Resurgence of Indigenous Traditions
The poem's source of inspiration
"I would like for readers to be able to grasp the strong connection that Indigenous people of Canada hold to the land, particularly in the North, and understand that they have an ancestral knowledge that transcends boundaries and time. My hope is that this poem empowers Indigenous communities in knowing that they hold the keys to powerful knowledge."
We know what it's like to live on the land,
To hunt for our dinner and work with our hands,
We know what it's like to kill a beast,
To use it for shelter, clothing and heat.
We know what it's like to scrape the hides,
To tan the pelt and smoke it dry,
To use every part meticulously;
To give thanks for offering itself for our needs.