“I come from an Indigenous female perspective,” says author Lesley Belleau, “but I’m writing for everybody. Anyone who can find the beauty within our culture will find the poems useful… Some of these poems were written 10 years ago, but the issues are still alive and ongoing today. When I write, I think a lot about image and about ancestral culture. The Ojibwe language is a language that is an image in itself.”
Lesley is an Anishnaabekwe writer from the Ojibway nation of Ketegaunseebee Garden River First Nation, located outside of Bawating/Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. She is a PhD candidate in the Indigenous Studies Department at Trent University, and is a T.A. in the Theatre Department in the History of Indigenous Dance Theatre. She has taught Indigenous Literature, Theatre and Creative Writing at Algoma University.
Lesley’s recent poetry collection Indianland won the Pat Lowther Memorial Award. In its citation, the jury said, “the howl of Indianland is a haunting echo, raising the unease at a longstanding injustice impossible to make right. These poems present a passion that goes beyond words… This is a truly moving and outstanding collection and a work that will prove its lasting value to Canadian literature for years to come.”
Appearing in: 40. Hope Matters