kôhkomak, those who still dance by Darcy Lindberg
2019 CBC Poetry Prize longlist
Darcy Lindberg has made the 2019 CBC Poetry Prize longlist for kôhkomak, those who still dance.
The winner of the 2019 CBC Poetry Prize will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, have their work published on CBC Books and attend a two-week writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Four finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and have their work published on CBC Books.
The shortlist will be announced on Nov. 14, 2019. The winner will be announced on Nov. 21, 2019.
Darcy Lindberg is a mixed-rooted Plains Cree from Wetaskiwin in nehiyâw askiy (Plains Cree territory)/Treaty 6. He is currently living in amiskwaciwâskahikan (Edmonton) and is a law professor at the University of Alberta. Darcy's work explores the nourishment that kinship and lineage has provided Plains Cree people during the "hard winters" of colonization.
Entry in five-ish words
Grandmothers govern in kindness.
The poem's source of inspiration
"I was moved to write this poem reflecting on the seeds of wahkotowin — the Plains Cree concept of relations — that were set in me during my childhood. It is a collection of tender experiences with my kôhkom (grandmother) and the broader caretaking of our laws and stories by all kôhkomak (grandmothers). We grew up poor in money but rich in our relations with each other. Our grandmothers, along with many others, worked to ensure that the deeper teachings of nehiyâw good living carried on in us, in the face of generations of colonial pressures. While I was hoping this poem would provide a small reflection of that, perhaps I mostly wanted to glimpse the feeling of being a 10-year-old boy again, walking the railway tracks to the store with a five-dollar bill in hand, sent by my kôhkom for a pail of ice cream."