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On February 3, 2021, the Speaker of the Senate, the Hon. George J. Furey, and the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Hon. Anthony Rota, announced the appointment of Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer for a two-year term as the ninth Parliamentary Poet Laureate.

Biography

Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer, Parliamentary Poet Laureate 2021-2022

Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer,
Parliamentary Poet Laureate 2021-2022

Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer was raised on Saddle Lake Reserve and attended Blue Quills Residential School. She graduated with a Bachelor of social work from the University of Regina and completed two years of Nechi Training in St. Albert’s Nechi Institute. Ms. Halfe serves on various committees throughout Canada and provides services with Opik, an Elders circle that works with apprehended children and their families. In 2005, she served as Saskatchewan’s second Poet Laureate. She is widely recognized for weaving Cree language and teachings into her works.

Her books, Bear Bones and Feathers (1994), Blue Marrow (2004), The Crooked Good (2007), and Burning In This Midnight Dream (2016) have all received numerous accolades and awards. Sôhkêyihta features selected poems and was published in 2018. Her latest work awâsis – kinky and dishevelled was released in the spring of 2021. Ms. Halfe has received honorary degrees from Wilfred Laurier University, the University of Saskatchewan and Mount Royal University. She is married and has two adult children and three grandsons.

Poems

  • For Your Pleasure | Senator Patricia Bovey (January 2022)
    For Your Pleasure [Cree translation]
  • A Celebration of the Arts | Senator Patricia Bovey (January 2022)
    A Celebration of the Arts [Cree translation]
  • The Moccasin Gardens | (December 2021)
    The Moccasin Gardens [Cree translation]
  • The warrior | Chief Perry Bellegarde (December 2021)
    The warrior [Cree translation]
  • Ota | Maclean’s (November 2021)
    Ota [Cree translation]
  • The Old Man | Saskatoon Chamber Singers (November 2021)
    The Old Man [Cree translation]
  • Wanuskewin | University of Saskatchewan Memoradum of Understanding (August 2021)
    Wanuskewin [Cree translation]
  • Mary Simon – Ningiukudluk | Governor General (July 2021)
    Mary Simon – Ningiukudluk [Cree translation]
  • Sexton | Canada Day (July 2021)
    Sexton [Cree translation]
    Video recording of the reading of Sexton
  • Angels: 215 >, 1820 – 1979 “The Past is Always Our Present” | Kamloops residential school (June 2021)
    Angels: 215 >, 1820 – 1979 “The Past is Always Our Present” [Cree translation]
    Video recording of the reading of Angels: 215 >, 1820 – 1979 “The Past is Always Our Present”
  • If I Could | Association of Professional Executives of the Public Service of Canada (May 2021)
    If I Could [Cree translation]
  • Over Sixty-Five | National Health and Fitness Day (May 2021)
    Over Sixty-Five [Cree translation]
  • Star People | World Poetry Day (March 2021)
    Star People [Cree translation]
  • Red | National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (March 2021)
    Red [Cree translation]
  • Louis Plamondon | Longest-serving Member of the House of Commons (March 2021)
    Louis Plamondon [Cree translation]
  • Forging Spirit | Globe Walk (February 2021)
    Forging Spirit [Cree translation]
  • Fasting and Feasting | COVID-19 pandemic (2021)
    Fasting and Feasting [Cree translation]
    Video recording of the reading of Fasting and Feasting
  • Bibliography

    Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer