Poetry. Native American Studies. FIRST INDIAN ON THE MOON opens with the section "Influences": "where I have been/ most of my lives/ is where I'm going/--Lucille Clifton". The stories and poems of Sherman Alexie, an enrolled Spokane/Coeur d'Alene Indian from Wellpint, Washington, have appeared widely, in such publications as Caliban, Esquire, The World, Beloit Poetry Journal, Red Dirt, Zyzzyva and Story. Alexie has won a National Endowment for the Arts Writing Fellowship, and lives in Spokane. "These elegiac poems and stories will break your heart. Watch this guy. He's making myth"--Joy Harjo.
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Sherman Alexie's poems, fiction, essays and films have won him an international following since his first book, THE BUSINESS OF FANCYDANCING, was published in 1992. SMOKE SIGNALS, the film he adapted from one of his short stories and co-produced, enlarged his audience still further. Alexie's awards include the Stranger Genius Award in Literature, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards for Excellence in Children's Literature in Fiction, and the National Book Award for Young People's Literature as well as honors and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Foundation, and a citation as "One of 20 Best American Novelists Under the Age of 40" from Granta magazine. An enrolled Spokane/Coeur d'Alene Indian, Alexie lives in Seattle with his wife and sons.From Publishers Weekly:
Reading this latest offering of poetry and short prose pieces from Native American writer Alexie ( The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven ), it's easy to see why his work has garnered so much attention. Working from a carefully developed understanding of his place in an oppressed culture, he focuses on the need to tear down obstacles before nature tears them down. Fire is therefore a central metaphor: a sister and brother-in-law killed, a burnt hand, cars aflame. Tongue in cheek, Alexie inserts images from popular songs and movies, and catalogues aspects of traditional reservation life that have been sacrificed in America's melting pot. "After 500 years of continuous lies / I would still sign treaties for you," he says in one of this volume's many love poems--a love so powerful it threatens to engulf readers as well. Alexie renews the nearly forgotten sense of language equaling power. And the language in these sequential works is flawless, each section picking up from and expanding upon the previous one, poetry and prose working naturally together. "Imagination is all we have as defense against capture and its inevitable changes," he writes. And he proves his point.
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