A KSUT Conversation with Writer, Musician and Poet Laureate Joy Harjo

Joy Harjo is the 23rd poet laureate of the United States and is in her third term in that position. She is a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and has been writing, teaching and performing music for over 40 years. She is the author of nine books of poetry and seven albums of music, including her latest “I Pray For My Enemies”. Joy Harjo recently spoke to KSUT Tribal Radio’s Crystal Ashike about her work, the pandemic and her fearlessness for beauty.

Interview Highlights:
• Harjo began writing poetry while active in a Native student club at the University of New Mexico as a way to “talk about what was going on, and especially with women.” She was influenced by learning the Navajo language, living in the Southwest, and the work of other Native American poets.
• On the pandemic, “I remember looking out the window, and it was just quiet. It took so many culture carriers from our Muskogee Creek Nation. We lost so many people like the roots, you know, the oldest roots, some of the deep roots.”
• She talks about her latest album I pray for my enemiesa collaboration with producer/engineer and ethnomusicologist Barrett Martin, featuring well-known rock guitarists.

Harjo brings a new identity to the poetry and songs that have made her a renowned poet of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and one of the most authentic and compelling voices of our time.

Listen to the interview for the full conversation.

Comments are closed.