Louise Waakaa'igan spent 16 years in prison. During that time, she leaned on a coping mechanism she developed in her early teens - poetry. Inspired and encouraged by the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop, she honed her writing skills while incarcerated. Her first collection of poetry This is Where is autobiographical, symbolic, honest and steeped in her Ojibwe culture. Louise discusses her poetry, prison life and freedom in this segment of Area Voices.
...this life is beautiful and crazy and hectic and yes, it's all good....I think in this world today, there is so much noise and distraction to distort who we really are individually. And it's always saving grace when you can remember the truth, who you are. The Ojibwe culture is so beautiful - indigenous people! We're strong, we're resilient, and we're still here. And we're beautiful people. - Louise Waakaa'igan
Poem: Facility Bread
Poem: Six Mile