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Poetry Indigenous

acâhkos nikamowini-pîkiskwêwina—The Star Poems

nêhiyawi-kîsik âcimowin—A Cree Sky Narrative

by (author) Jesse Archibald-Barber

Your Nickel's Worth Publishing
Initial publish date
Sep 2023
Indigenous, Canadian, Epic
Recommended Age
15 to 18
Recommended Grade
10 to 12
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2023
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Aided by Grandmother Spider, Star Woman discovers the Hole-in-the-Sky, opening a pathway for the Star People to experience the wonder of life on earth. But the world falls into the hands of the Paper People, jeopardizing the sacred harmony between nature and the cosmos. And so Little Spirit, a young boy, must search for meaning and find redemption in the care of Grandmother Moon.

An epic narrative, The Star Poems explores the black hole of colonial history—Residential Schools, the loss of the father, youth suicide—and the vital role of women in reclaiming our traditional knowledge, the teachings that stitch together the fabric of the universe.

The Star Poems creatively engages Cree oral tradition in a new way, connecting Indigenous spirituality and quantum physics to honour and adapt some of our most ancient stories about the origins of life and our place in the universe. Presented in both English and Cree, The Star Poems is a timely contribution to the revitalization of the Cree language—and the fascinating world of star stories.

About the author

Jesse Rae Archibald-Barber is from Regina, oskana kâ-asastêki (Regina, Saskatchewan), and is of Cree, Métis, and Scottish heritage. A professor of Indigenous Literatures at the First Nations University of Canada, his publications include stories and poems in The Malahat Review, The Canadian Journal of Native Studies, MBC Magazine, and mitewâcimowina: Indigenous Science Fiction and Speculative Storytelling. He also edited the award-winning anthology kisiskâciwan: Indigenous Voices from Where the River Flows Swiftly, and co-edited Performing Turtle Island: Indigenous Theatre on the World Stage.

Jesse Archibald-Barber's profile page

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