Trace Lara Hentz (DeMeyer)
|book cover: Becoming|
|book cover: Sleeps with Knives|
Trace L. Hentz is former editor of the Pequot Times in Connecticut and editor/co-founder of Ojibwe Akiing in Wisconsin. She worked as staff writer at News From Indian Country 1996-1999. Her writing, interviews and poetry have been published in newspapers and journals in the USA, Canada and Europe. She is the founder of Blue Hand Books, a publishing collective she started for other Native authors in 2011. She has been a panelist and presenter on the topic of Indian Adoption at many universities in the U.S and Canada. A mix of American Indian (Shawnee-Cherokee) and French Canadian-Cree-Irish, Trace is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Superior with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, and lives in Greenfield her husband Herb, former GCC Director of Admission.
Known for her exceptional print interviews with Leonard Peltier, John Trudell and Floyd Red Crow Westerman, Trace Hentz (who legally dropped the name DeMeyer in 2014) started intensive research on adoptees in 2004. Her memoir ONE SMALL SACRIFICE was a ground-breaking exposé on the systematic removal of American Indian children from their mothers, families and tribes for adoption to non-Indian families while she weaves in her own personal story. Her adoptee journey takes her around the country, finally meeting her birthfather in 1994 and learning about her mixed ancestry (Cherokee-Shawnee-Delaware-French Canadian.) Trace is former editor of tribal newspapers the Pequot Times and Ojibwe Akiing. She has contributed to adoption anthologies: Lost Daughters, Adoption Reunion in the Age of Social Media, and Adoptionland: From Orphans to Activists. In 2013, she was co-editor of the anthology Unraveling the Spreading Cloth of Time: Indigenous Thoughts Concerning the Universe with MariJo Moore.
The blog American Indian Adoptees [https://blog.americanindianadoptees.com] ranks in the top 100 adoption blogs and has reached over a million views in 2020.
In 2017, Trace contributed poetry to Tending the Fire: Native Voices and Portraits.
Published on 4-20-16 (Book 3 in Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects series)
|available on KOBO in Canada|
When We Disappeared?One Small Sacrifice | GRIEF MEMOIR (coming after the plague)
Sleeps With Knives and Becoming (both reissued)
4 part Book Series on Lost Children
She has also contributed to the following:
Adoption Reunion in the Age of Social Media: Her Chapter: Finding Earl
Lost Daughters anthology: Trace contributed a Chapter MENDING THE HOOP…Lost Daughters: Writing Adoption from a Place of Empowerment and Peace (anthology) The Lost Daughters anthology features a collection of writings aimed to bring readers the perspectives of adopted women and highlight their strength, resiliency, and wisdom. Amanda Woolston is the primary editor for this anthology was published through CQT Media and Publishing and LGA, Inc. in January 2014. [Kindle Edition].
Adoptionland: From Orphans to Activists [Ever wondered what it’s like to be adopted? This anthology begins with personal accounts and then shifts to a bird’s eye view on adoption from domestic, intercountry and transracial adoptees who are now adoptee rights activists. Along with adopted people, this collection also includes the voices of mothers and a father from the Baby Scoop Era, a modern-day mother who almost lost her child to adoption, and ends with the experience of an adoption investigator from Against Child Trafficking. These stories are usually abandoned by the very industry that professes to work for the “best interest of children,” “child protection,” and for families. However, according to adopted people who were scattered across nations as children, these represent typical human rights issues that have been ignored for too long. For many years, adopted people have just dealt with such matters alone, not knowing that all of us—as a community—have a great deal in common.]
|LINK to buy|
5 ***** REVIEW: Unravelling the Spreading Cloth of Time: Indigenous Thoughts Concerning the Universe
This is an interesting, at times compelling, collection of poems, stories, personal essays and declarations. They champion and reflect an understanding of the sacredness and inter-relatednesss of all life. These beliefs not that long ago were dismissed by mainstream American thinking as superstitious and primitive yet they resound with a deep sense of humility, respect and gratitude for all forms of life.The book is organised into five parts in and around the theme of indigenous traditions and understandings of the cosmos: the interconnectedness of all life; cosmologies of medicines and ceremonialism; prayers, dreams and visions; stories and weavings; and sacred spaces and spiritual energies These at times are interlinked with commentaries about the theories of life emerging from the work of atomic physicists.It's a poetic and lyrical dance, a continual weaving and reweaving of the micro and macro.
Thus Kim Shuck (Tsalagi) when she writes in her beautiful, moving piece `Tangled' in Part Three that she `sings to the world rich with mystery with exploration', to the `trickster state of being', and in particular, those deft lines about the young girl, `small small mystery that she is, (who) doesn't know how to control medicine, she only knows how to be a secret'.
Titles themselves become immediate entry points of reverie, as in Lois Red Elk's (D/Lakota) poem in Part One, `I am related to the Day', where the weather is personalised as a relative in the rich interweaving of life. And in John D Berry's (Cherokee/Choctaw) piece `Green Corn' in Part Two, where `Dawn's Light/Prayers on the Wind' carries the ancestors into the future, the future back into the present.
Time is cyclical, seasonal, rhythmic, continuous.
We see that most poignantly in Stephanie A. Sellers (Cherokee/Shawnee) wondrous writing (in Part Three) about her father, who died on 12/12/12, the day of planetary confluences boding the end of one epoch, the beginning of another. Her father `who spent every living hour/governed by the turning of the sun' returning home to the world of spirit on a mid-winter's day. It's a beautiful, sublime piece reminding us of the continual process of becoming, returning, re-coming.
As MariJo Moore (Cherokee) writes in her introduction to Part Three: dance, speech, prayer are not just things said or done; they are experienced.
Similarly, Mary Black Bonnet (Lakota) in Lel U Kunpi Kin Cante Mawaste (Because we are here, my heart is good) dances and sings with her daughter, not just doing those actions, but being them, being singing, being dancing. `I dance', she writes, `to honor my journey from my people (when I was adopted by non-natives) and my journey back to my people'. And that dance, that going forth and returning, she shows, embodies, is, celebration.
Hence too Trace A. DeMeyer (Tsalagi/Shawnee) when she tells us in her "Four Souls" in Part Two: `Our purpose here is to "create", not just live' and that are `Our souls exist to journey, to experience, to give thanks'.
This is also a book of recovery, of remembering, of piecing together that which has been fragmented, dissipated, overwhelmed by centuries of repression, genocide, alienation, separation.
Carole W. Bachofner's (Abenaki) adroit, powerful question (and answer) in her poem We Speak the White Man's Language in Part Three : Where did the language go when the black robes/threw holy water on it? Did it disappear/when the switch was on our backs? Into the trees/into the streams, into our wombs to wait' - are words of an inextinguishable faith.Or Kim Shuck when she exalts: I am singing connection to a wildly entangled world.Prayer, words, ceremony not only help create a world of beauty and medicine, they are medicine, they are, in Carole W Bachofner's inimitable words, when honoured, when spoken and lived truly, a `clearing, a place for fire'.
Just as too, Denise Low (Delaware/Cherokee), in exploring the power of words, reminds us `a breathed word is a living being', that life and landscape are textured with language, so that `migration stories are journeys of geography and...the soul'.
Everything is alive, everything is storied. `We are story stones', MariJo Moore writes in her introduction to Part Four, `on which sacred carvings are added daily'.
Such words are celebrations, such celebrations and stories pathways to the sacred, to sacred places and sacred spaces. These in turn are repositories of memories, knowledge and, in Vine Deloria Jr's (Standing Rock Sioux) carefully woven words in Part Five, The Spiritual Universe, speak of - and are - relationship, connection.
Unravelling the Spreading Cloth of Time is a book one can read as a whole or in parts and return to, dip into, like bathing in a clear stream. Often it's the small, deft details that evoke the humanity of writers such as Stephanie A Sellers, where sparse descriptions give us space, allow us to fill in the details the way that dappled sun ripples into leaves, revealing their veins.
Trace's book One Small Sacrifice and Blue Hand Books is mentioned on page 40! REALLY Nice!
New issue of Shelf Unbound
Click on this link to start reading your new issue right now:
In this issue:
Street Photographer Vivian Maier, discovered
Boy Scout Stuff
MTV's Glory Days
Interview with Thomas Steinbeck
Poetry, Book Club Find, Short Stories, and More
Trace/Lara blogs here:
BOOK TRAILER: http://youtu.be/EmCT4vnWjbI
Unraveling the Spreading Cloth of Time
By Trace Hentz (founder of Blue Hand Books)
Last year well-known poet-author MariJo Moore (who lives in North Carolina and was mentored by Vine Deloria Jr.) contacted me and invited me to co-edit a new anthology about quantum physics and thoughts about this "time" we are experiencing and how Indigenous people view the universe.
MariJo put out a call for Native American writers and many responded immediately with essays, poems and stories. Forty Native writers from across the world participated and this collection is dedicated to the late literary genius Vine Deloria, Jr. who himself has a extraordinary essay about quantum physics in this book.
MariJo is also an artist and created the beautiful mosaic for the cover and now our book is available and can be purchased as an ebook and paperback on Amazon and from www.marijomoore.com.
I was so honored she asked me - and happy to be able to write about my own experience studying quantum physics and healing. For this book, I wrote an essay FOUR SOULS. I learned from many teachers over a long time and felt it was time to share these stories.
We need to connect with our souls especially now - many many people feel that this period of time is important and worldwide our human feelings are rapidly changing. Indigenous People have long told stories to keep balance and command respect of our planet MOTHER EARTH. I do believe the Mayan were suggesting a new mindset for all of us - a greater belief that we are all connected as humans on this planet and related to every living thing.
The Lakota use the phrase: Mitakuye Oyasin which means we are all related. Indeed we are all related and sharing this planet.
This anthology contributors: Suzan Shown Harjo, Gabriel Horn, John Trudell, Dean Hutchins, Lois Red Elk, Suzanne Zahrt Murphy, Amy Krout-Horn, Jack D. Forbes, John D. Berry, Sidney Cook Bad Moccasin, III, Trace A. DeMeyer (Hentz), Clifford E. Trafzer, William S. Yellow Robe, Jr., Bobby González, Duane BigEagle, Carol Bachofner, Lela Northcross Wakely, Georges Sioui, Keith Secola, Mary Black Bonnet, Kim Shuck, Trevino L. Brings Plenty, Dawn Karima Pettigrew, Stephanie A. Sellers, Natalie Kindrick, Basil H. Johnston, Barbara-Helen Hill, Alice Azure, Phyllis A. Fast, Doris Seale, Terra Trevor, Denise Low, Vine Deloria Jr., Jim Stevens, ire’ne lara silva, Susan Deer Cloud, Odilia Galván Rodríguez, Tiokasin Ghosthorse, Tony Abeyta, and MariJo Moore.
''All the tribes say the universe is just the product of mind … It fits perfectly with the Quantum. Indians believe the universe is mind, but they explore the spiritual end of it, not the physical end.” -Vine Deloria Jr. (from the introduction in new anthology)
“Unraveling the Spreading Cloth of Time offers a very clear contrast between the Western science view of the cosmos as an object for study -- something external to the scientists -- and the Native American view of each person being a participating part of a dynamical, living web of connections. This anthology will be very useful in opening up readers to a vision and experience of the Native American worldview, which is presented expertly throughout the text as one of flux and change.” - Dr. F. David Peat, Theoretical Physicist, founder of the Pari Center for New Learning in Italy, and author of Blackfoot Physics and Science, Order and Creativity (with David Bohm)
Read this review: www.prairiemary.blogspot.com
Vine Deloria, God is Red (onebookafteranother.wordpress.com)