Dragonfly Dance

May 13th, 2011 | By | Category: 22-4: Honoring Student Success, Media Reviews

By Denise K. Lajimodiere
Michigan State University Press (2010)

Review by Ryan Winn

Denise Lajimodiere’s debut poetry collection, Dragonfly Dance, is an engaging read, and her words and imagery resonate long after the last page is turned. Through her crisp and unblinking eye, readers explore stories and histories of the author, her people, and the land that has come to be known as North Dakota.

Crazy Horse is in these pages, as is the author’s drunken father, hypocritical members of the Catholic Church, and the Dragonflies who protected Crazy Horse and also heal a young victim of a car accident. Certainly these poems speak of loss and sadness, but throughout the collection there is an undertone of empowerment that articulates the healing power of words on a printed page.

This collection announces the arrival of a new and important voice in American Indian poetry, and it should be considered for inclusion in poetry courses and libraries that house American Indian writing.

Ryan Winn is an English, theatre, and communications instructor at College of Menominee Nation in Keshena and Green Bay, WI.

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