International Women’s Day

The First American Indian to Serve as US Poet Laureate: Joy Harjo

Come joins us to celebrate International Women’s Day by exploring the journey of Joy Harjo, a Muscogee/Creek woman whose paternal ancestors fought the U.S. for their land in “Indian Territory.” She is an artist and musician (sax) in addition to being a writer of poetry, essays, plays, memoir and story with an international following. A mythic, visionary, spiritual poet and “truth-teller” who has a global consciousness of women and the Earth, she has said, “from the moon, we all look the same.” One of her signature poems proclaims: “The world begins at a kitchen table.” Through the lens of Joy Harjo’s life and poetry, we will explore what is on that table now.

Estella Lauter retired to Door County in 2004 and began to gather her poems into chapbooks with the help of a strong community of poets. At UWGB in the 80s, she worked with colleagues in several departments to establish an American Indian Studies Minor, and later at UW Oshkosh, she secured a grant to establish an American Indian Studies Consortium in the UW System. She in indebted to Ojibwe, Oneida and Menominee students and faculty at UWGB who introduced her to this extraordinary body of history, literature and oral traditions.