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Crazy Brave

Crazy Brave

A spiritual coming-of-age memoir from a poet praised for her “breathtaking complex witness and world-remaking language” (Adrienne Rich).

In this transcendent memoir, grounded in tribal myth and ancestry, music and poetry, Joy Harjo, one of our leading Native American voices, details her journey to becoming a poet. Born in Oklahoma, the end place of the Trail of Tears, Harjo grew up learning to dodge an abusive stepfather by finding shelter in her imagination, a deep spiritual life, and connection with the natural world.

She attended an Indian arts boarding school, where she nourished an appreciation for painting, music, and poetry; gave birth while still a teenager; and struggled on her own as a single mother, eventually finding her poetic voice.

Narrating the complexities of betrayal and love, Crazy Brave is a memoir about family and the breaking apart necessary in finding a voice. Harjo’s tale of a hardscrabble youth, young adulthood, and transformation into an award-winning poet and musician is haunting, unique, and visionary.

Book Details

Publisher: W.W. Norton and Company
Publish Date: July 9, 2012
ISBN: 9780393073461
Language: English

About the Author

Joy Harjo is an internationally renowned poet, performer, and writer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and served three terms as the 23rd Poet Laureate of the United States. Harjo is the author of ten books of poetry, several plays, children’s books, and two memoirs; she has also produced seven award-winning music albums and edited several anthologies.

Her many honors include the Ruth Lily Prize from the Poetry Foundation, the Academy of American Poets Wallace Stevens Award, two NEA fellowships, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a Tulsa Artist Fellowship. She is a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and Board of Directors Chair of the Native Arts & Cultures Foundation. She lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where she is the inaugural Artist-in-Residence for the Bob Dylan Center.

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