Allison Adelle Hedge Coke

b. 1958
Allison Adelle Hedge CokeTravis Hedge Coke
Of Huron, Metis, Cherokee, Creek, French Canadian, Portuguese, Irish, Scot, and English descent, poet and educator Allison Adelle Hedge Coke grew up in North Carolina, Texas, Canada, and the Great Plains region. She attended North Carolina State University and earned an AFAW in creative writing from the Institute for American Indian Arts and an MFA from Vermont College. She is the author of the poetry chapbook Year of the Rat (1996); the full-length poetry collections Dog Road Woman (1997), Off-Season City Pipe (2005), and Blood Run (2006); and the memoir Rock, Ghost, Willow, Deer (2004, 2013).
 
Hedge Coke grew up listening to her father’s traditional stories. In Rock, Ghost, Willow, Deer, she explores her Native American heritage and the experience of growing up with a schizophrenic mother, as well as her struggles with alcoholism and abuse. In Blood Run, a verse play, Hedge Coke’s persona poems advocate the need to protect the Indigenous North American mound city Blood Run.
 
Hedge Coke has worked as a mentor and teacher with Native Americans—on reservations, in urban areas, and in prisons—and at-risk youth. She was named Mentor of the Year in 2001 by the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers.
 
Hedge Coke has also edited numerous anthologies, including two of student writing: Coming to Life, poems for peace in response to 9-11 (2002) and They Wanted Children (2003). She has also edited It’s Not Quiet Anymore (1992); Voices of Thunder (1993); To Topos (2007); Effigies (2009), a collection of work by Inupiat and Hawaiian Native poets; Sing: Poetry From the Indigenous Americas (2011), named a Best Book of 2011 by National Books Critics Circle's Critical Mass; and Effigies II (2014).
 
Dog Road Woman won the American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation, and Hedge Coke has twice received the Writer of the Year award for Poetry from the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers. She held a NEH appointment at Hartwick College in 2004, and was a Reynolds Chair of poetry and writing at the University of Nebraska, Kearney. She has also taught at Naropa University, the University of California, Riverside, and the University of Central Oklahoma, and she is currently a Distinguished Writer in Residence at the University of Hawaii, Manoa.

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Articles About ALLISON ADELLE HEDGE COKE

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Poetry Lectures
  • Listen Three Native American Poets
    The Harriet Monroe Poetry Institute hosts a conversation between Allison Adelle Hedge Coke, Linda Hogan, and Sherwin Bitsui.

Poet Categorization

POET’S REGION U.S., Southwestern

LIFE SPAN 1958–

Allison Adelle Hedge Coke

Biography

Of Huron, Metis, Cherokee, Creek, French Canadian, Portuguese, Irish, Scot, and English descent, poet and educator Allison Adelle Hedge Coke grew up in North Carolina, Texas, Canada, and the Great Plains region. She attended North Carolina State University and earned an AFAW in creative writing from the Institute for American Indian Arts and an MFA from Vermont College. She is the author of the poetry chapbook Year of the Rat . . .

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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