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The Gold Shop of Ba-’Ali
Folly
Balefire
Evolution of the Genus Iris
Songs for a Summons
Detroit as Barn
Wolf Teeth  
|
  Henry Real Bird

ISBN 978-0-9883166-4-5    $16.95  /  $18.95 (Canada)    5.5 x 8.5   92 pp   Sept 2013    Featured Poetry





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The inner heart commotion of Henry Real Bird is poised in a physical and metaphysical terrain marked by the history, culture, language and identity of his Apsaalooke nation. At the same time, no one else contemplates broncs, Chinook winds, the Wolf Teeth Mountains and forgotten creek beds in the way that Real Bird does—his is a careful, astute eye that reminds us again and again of our own interrelation, of our responsibility to all beings, all places that make up our world and beyond.

—M. L. Smoker, Another Attempt at Rescue


About the Author

Henry Real Bird

Henry Real Bird

Henry Real Bird is a rancher and educator who raises bucking horses on Yellow Leggins Creek in the Wolf Teeth Mountains. He was born and raised on the Crow Indian Reservation in the tradition of the Crow by his grandparents, Mark and Florence Real Bird. Educated in Montana at Crow Agency, Hardin, Bozeman and Billings, he has a Master’s Degree in general education. Henry has punched cows, worked in rodeos, and taught school from Kindergarten to college level. He began writing poetry in 1969 after an extended stay in the hospital. He still speaks Crow as his primary language and feels this has helped in writing his poetry. Henry Real Bird served as the Poet Laureate of Montana from 2009-2011, and was named the 2011-2012 Academy of Western Artists Cowboy Poet of the Year. His previous collection of poems, Horse Tracks (Lost Horse Press, 2010), was named 2011 Poetry Book of the Year by the High Plains Book Awards.

Awards

REVIEWS

Reviewed on CowboyPoetry.com | 25 September 2013

Henry Real Bird, Montana rancher, Crow elder, and past Montana Poet Laureate, has a new collection, Wolf Teeth, which brims with luminous poems. The reader is transported—often on good horses—to worlds of uncommon light, rare spirituality, and the unexpected. There are horses, cowboys, rodeo stories, observations of Nature and the Spirit, and messages to unnamed objects of love in these clear and honest poems.

One standout, "Cowboy," employs many generous stanzas with the life of Charles Russell woven through, in a poem that is full of sight and sound and layered images, often breathtaking, sometimes galloping—an impressive dissertation on cowboys and history:

. . . He must have heard
the sun rising,
night hawk on herd.
This must have been the sixth sense—
ground step, harmony with nature dispense.

Poet M.L. Smoker, Director of Indian Education for Montana comments on Wolf Teeth, "The inner heart commotion of Henry Real Bird is poised in a physical and metaphysical terrain marked by the history, culture, language and identity of his Apsaalooke nation. At the same time, no one else contemplates broncs, Chinook winds, the Wolf Teeth Mountains and forgotten creek beds in the way that Real Bird does—his is a careful, astute eye that reminds us again and again of our own interrelation, of our responsibility to all beings, all places that make up our world and beyond."

The book is beautifully produced and designed by Lost Horse Press, from the cover painting by Chuck deHaan, to Henry Real Bird's own illustrations inside the book, to the back cover, which displays Jeri Dobrowski's popular image of the poet, taken at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering.

Wolf Teeth is available for $16.95 plus postage from Lost Horse Press, www.losthorsepress.org and other booksellers.

Posted 9/25 at http://www.cowboypoetry.com/henryrealbird.htm

 

CROW INDIAN CULTURE IN POETRY with Henry Real Bird

by Chérie Newman

Henry Real Bird talks about Crow Indian culture and reads poems from his new collection, Wolf Teeth. He also sings a poem.

 

About Henry Real Bird's Poetry

The inner heart commotion of Henry Real Bird is poised in a physical and metaphysical terrain marked by the history, culture, language and identity of his Apsaalooke nation. At the same time, no one else contemplates broncs, Chinook winds, the Wolf Teeth Mountains and forgotten creek beds in the way that Real Bird does—his is a careful, astute eye that reminds us again and again of our own interrelation, of our responsibility to all beings, all places that make up our world and beyond.

—M. L. Smoker, Another Attempt at Rescue

 

Henry Real Bird's poems are of the moment and thus timeless. We look to Henry for a check of the pulse of things coded in words that work to decipher what he often calls "feelings." But are they more like soundings of the heart and of the earth? And then again are they poems, song, or prayers" All I know is I'm glad they are preserved.

—Hal Cannon, Founding Director, Western Folklife Center

 

Henry Real Bird is a rancher and educator who raises bucking horses on Yellow Leggins Creek in the Wolf Teeth Mountains. He was born and raised on the Crow Indian Reservation in the tradition of the Crow by his grandparents, Mark and Florence Real Bird. Educated in Montana at Crow Agency, Hardin, Bozeman and Billings, he has a Master’s Degree in general education. Henry has punched cows, worked in rodeos, and taught school from Kindergarten to college level. He began writing poetry in 1969 after an extended stay in the hospital. He still speaks Crow as his primary language and feels this has helped in writing his poetry. Henry Real Bird served as the Poet Laureate of Montana from 2009-2011, and was named the 2011-2012 Academy of Western Artists Cowboy Poet of the Year. His previous collection of poems, Horse Tracks (Lost Horse Press, 2010), was named 2011 Poetry Book of the Year by the High Plains Book Awards.



Wind Swept Love

Last night the moon peeked in,
later stars came too.
Today I moved some pairs
up a draw in Autumn gather,
I ran into blue birds
that reminded me of a beauty
from the Valley of the Chiefs.
Wind swept love away
so I whipped Gone, over and under,
for my love keeps returning to her,
riding through memories in this beautiful land
where the blue birds live.

—Henry Real Bird