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Jane Johnston Schoolcraft's Ojibwe Mother Started the Native Poet's Literary Journey

Offbeat  (tags: Ozhagusodaywayquay, Susan Johnston, Jane Johnston, Sault Ste Marie, MI, )

- 1760 days ago -
She was an Ojibwe woman of many names. And one choice she made helped result in the first poetry anyone knows of to be written in a Native language.

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Sue Matheson (79)
Monday June 24, 2013, 1:18 pm

Christeen A (370)
Monday June 24, 2013, 1:46 pm
Quite interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Debbie G (306)
Monday June 24, 2013, 2:10 pm
pretty cool. Thanks.

Kit B (276)
Monday June 24, 2013, 2:17 pm

Lovely story and celebration of a life well lived.

Pat B (356)
Monday June 24, 2013, 2:31 pm
Thank you, for this wonderful story.!!

Sheryl G (363)
Monday June 24, 2013, 5:14 pm
Nyaa nindinendam
(Oh I am thinking)

(I am reminded)

(Of my homeland)

(A faraway place)

(My homeland)

Nidaanisens e
(My little daughter)

Nigwizisens e
(My little son)

Ishe naganagwaa
(I leave them far behind)

(A faraway place)

(My homeland)

Zhigwa gosha wiin

Beshowad e we
(It is near)

Ninzhike we ya
(I am alone)

Ishe izhayaan
(As I go)

(My homeland)

(My homeland)

Ninzhike we ya
(I am alone)

Ishe giiweyaan
(I am going home)

Nyaa nigashkendam
(Oh I am sad)

(My homeland)

To listen to this poem in her language click onto this link.

Gloria picchetti (304)
Monday June 24, 2013, 5:39 pm
I am related to a descendant of John Johnston and Woman of the Glades through a marriage in Michigan in the 1800s.
Two books about the John Johnston family are;
The Invasion by Janet Lewis
Harps Upon the Willows; The Johnston Family of the Old Northwest by Marjorie Cahn Brazer.


JL A (281)
Monday June 24, 2013, 5:50 pm
Inspirational --thanks for sharing

Judith Hand (55)
Monday June 24, 2013, 6:00 pm
Noted. Thanks, Dandelion, so interesting, so sweet and informative.

Terry V (30)
Monday June 24, 2013, 6:09 pm
Many thanks!!!

Monday June 24, 2013, 6:17 pm
Noted Thanks Dandelion

Birgit W (160)
Monday June 24, 2013, 6:52 pm
Thank you Dandelion.

DaleLovesOttawa O (198)
Monday June 24, 2013, 7:14 pm
Marvellous, interesting site and poem which I also listened to. Thank you Dandelion.

Lois Jordan (63)
Monday June 24, 2013, 7:48 pm
Noted. Thanks so much for posting, Dandelion!

Rose Becke (141)
Monday June 24, 2013, 8:06 pm

Past Member (0)
Monday June 24, 2013, 10:12 pm
Dandelion; ale degdanilvga. Donadagohvi.


Elisa F (235)
Monday June 24, 2013, 10:53 pm
Very Beautiful. Thanks Dandelion.

Robert Hardy (68)
Monday June 24, 2013, 11:16 pm
Very Interesting. Looking for these poems.

Giana Peranio-paz (398)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 12:22 am
Thanks Dandelion, very beautiful and touching.

cynthia l (207)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 12:35 am
Beautiful and haunting Go listen to the song She was a woman ahead od her time.

Eternal Gardener (745)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 1:00 am
Beautiful... thank you, Dandelion!

TomCat S (129)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 1:12 am
She deserves all our thanks for preserving her culture, in spite of those trying to destroy it.

Irene S (69)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 2:27 am
Thank you very much for posting!

Angelika R (143)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 3:19 am
Thx for sharing Jane's story, let's honor this first American Indian poet! Perhaps also dedicate this to our dear friend and Ojebwe descendant Roxy. (if I'm not mistaken)

MarietteAWAY G (175)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 3:37 am
Thanks for sharing Sheryl!

Daniel Partlow (179)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 6:49 am
Beautiful, thanks Sheryl

Abdessalam Diab (145)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 8:40 am
It is very important revive native Americans culture. A great story. Thanks for sharing Sheryl.

Elizabeth Fuller (134)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 10:35 am
Thanks for the post Dandelion, makes me want to gather my children and tell them about their lineage.

. (0)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 3:29 pm
Wonderful story-wonderful women. Ty Dandelion

Sheryl G (363)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 3:54 pm
You should Elizabeth, everyone should know their heritage no matter from what background. I think it makes us feel more connected and brings a type of richness to our families.

Alison Baker (25)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 5:14 pm
As a member of Toastmasters International, I know how special & significant this story is.

Thanks so much for sharing!!

Mitchell D (104)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 7:29 pm
Thanks, Dandelion.
I was in Indian country, a few days ago, visited the Pueblo outside of Taos, New Mexico, the first capital of the state.

Sheryl G (363)
Tuesday June 25, 2013, 7:32 pm
Excellent Alison, wonderful organization. I do hope you had a marvelous visit Mitchell. Please if you have time let me know behind the scenes.

Past Member (0)
Wednesday June 26, 2013, 5:59 am

SusanAWAY Allen (219)
Thursday June 27, 2013, 7:19 pm
Thanks. That was a most interesting article. Noted and shared.

SuSanne P (193)
Saturday June 29, 2013, 9:56 am
Thank you DEARLY Dandelion.
"She is kneeling in her garden, a long braid of hair down her back, accompanied by an owl perched on her shoulder and a fisher (a kind of weasel) at her side, expressing her closeness to nature."

Shaheen N (64)
Sunday June 30, 2013, 3:47 am
Thanks for sharing Sheryl. Interesting article about a great literary lady & her poetry.

Michael M (60)
Sunday June 30, 2013, 12:04 pm
Dearest Dandelion,
We are so privileged to hear of these women and of the songs they began so long ago to bring healing and meeting of all peoples, human and other.
This movement is now becoming visible through their and your love and efforts.

Jane Johnston Schoolcraft did only live for about 42 years, but with her family, fulfilled her name:

Baamewaawaagizhigokwe : "Woman of the Sound the Stars Make Rushing Through the Sky"

I see on the page, that some great dancers are also featured. Maria Tallchief (her sister was also marvelous interpreter of spirit - Marjorie Tallchief, both Cherokee), To their names, I would like to add Rosella Hightower (of Choctaw). Yvonne Choteau, (Shawnee), and Moscelyne Larkin (of Peoria and Shawnee), make the Five Moons who were born in the 8 years of 1920-28, helping to heal the rift in spirit across the world - for their dnce, ballet, is a discipline of beauty and power. They were among my teachers' teachers.
I will mention a friend Julia Navarro (of Dine'/Navajo - there are some male friends from this and other tribal families, but this is about the new healing coming through Woman) another American ballerina, who still dances and teaches in the style of flamenco, a dance that calls to duende - spirit power.

Just as the Ojibwe offer us songs to hold in our hearts, lighting the paths, when we see the beauty and necessity of those paths, we are asked by spirit to give, like the distant stars, light and sound from our journey across the sky. Thank you for giving this.

Anne P (174)
Thursday July 4, 2013, 7:49 am
Dandelion, thank you for introducing me to Jane and her beautiful poetry. Her life story is fascinating. Hearing her poem sung in her language gave me goosebumps. I found her book on Amazon and will buy a copy.

Nancy C (806)
Saturday July 20, 2013, 10:45 pm
saving this to study further. so much to learn...
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