Unearthing Secrets, Gathering Truths, a debut poetry collection by author and filmmaker Jules Arita Koostachin, delves into the life and the healing of an lnnininew woman from the ancestral lands of the Moshkekowok, now called Northern Ontario. It is through the process of writing broken poetry—visual poetry rooted in the haunting memories of her childhood—that she provides the reader a glimpse into the mind of child survivor who was saved by her ancestors. This thought-provoking poetry sheds light on a personal account of how she comes to terms with intergenerational trauma inflicted by the residential school system.

Unearthing Secrets, Gathering Truths explores heartfelt and evocative experiences through the eyes of an Indigenous woman. Through the honesty of her words, she embraces the spirit world, the resilience of her foremothers, the integral healing powers of disassociation as a survival mechanism, and the richness of her mitewin—dreams—which reconnects her to herself. Through her poetry, she has found the courage to face her difficult past, and now as a mother, she is gathering the truths of her family to help in the healing process.

Unearthing Secrets, Gathering Truths was short-listed for the 2019 Indigenous Voices Award in Published Poetry in English.”

Read an excerpt from Unearthing Secrets, Gathering Truths

About the Author

Jules Arita Koostachin

Born in Moose Factory Ontario, Jules was raised by her Cree speaking grandparents in Moosonee, and also with her mother in Ottawa, a warrior of the Canadian Residential school system. Jules is a band member of Attawapiskat First Nation, the Ancestral lands of the MoshKeKo InNiNeWak. She currently resides in Vancouver where she is a PhD candidate with the Institute of Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia, her research focus is Indigenous documentary.

Jules was the “Aboriginal” [Indigenous] Storyteller in Residence with the Vancouver Public Library where she further developed her poetry. She carries extensive knowledge working in Indigenous community in several different capacities and these community experiences continue to feed her advocacy and her arts practice.

Unearthing Secrets, Gathering Truths


To unearth our secrets means we must face our past, and in doing so, we will find our voice

Weight 275 g
Dimensions 25.5 × 16.5 × 1 cm
Publication Date

August 2018


6.5 x 10





ISBN-13 9781928120148

In stock


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