For April, National Poetry Month, we shine the spotlight on D.A. Lockhart, author of multiple poetry collections and the award winning short story collection Breaking Right: Stories. His work has been shortlisted for the Raymond Souster Award, Indiana Author’s Awards, First Nations Communities READ Award, and has been a finalist for the ReLit Award.
Lockhart is pùkuwànkoamimëns, Turtle Clan, of the Moravian of the Thames First Nation and currently resides at Waawiiyaatanong and Pelee Island where he is the publisher at Urban Farmhouse Press.
Last fall, the Ontario Arts Council awarded Lockhart an Indigenous arts project grant to support his forthcoming work, Commonwealth. Lockhart’s writings frequently explore themes of decolonization and reconciliation.
In 2021, Kegedonce Press published D.A. Lockhart’s eighth poetry collection, Go Down Odawa Way, a poetic journey into the physical, historical and cultural landscapes of Waawiiyaatanong (Windsor, ON to Detroit, MI), the territory of the Three Fires Confederacy. Go Down Odawa Way was shortlisted for the 2022 First Nations Communities READ competition.
In an interview with Open Book, Lockhart reflects on his writing process, on endings, and on a taxidermied iguana that became the inspiration for one of the poems in Go Down Odawa Way (below).
This year, we are excited to be publishing Lockhart’s ninth poetry collection, North of Middle Island. The book is set in the natural and constructed landscapes of Pelee Island, the southernmost inhabited point in Canada (the uninhabited Middle Island of the title is the actual southernmost tip of the country, an 18.5 hectare island just 150 metres from the US border in Lake Eerie).
North of Middle Island begins with a collection of poems reflecting on the unique culture of the region. The book concludes with a long epic-style poem called “Piper,” a fictional narrative about actor and wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper’s time on Pelee Island. North of Middle Island is slated for release in September 2023.
You can find out more about D.A. Lockhart’s work at Wazhashk Poetry