Inupiaq-Inuit poet dg nanouk okpik was raised in an adoptive Irish German family in Anchorage, Alaska. She earned a BFA at the Institute of American Indian Arts and an MFA at the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast College.
Okpik’s lyric pastoral poems are set in her native Alaskan landscape and concerned with movement and sensory precision; she often incorporates elements of mapmaking and mythology. In a 2013 review of Corpse Whale for A Journal of the Built + Natural Environments, Dorine Jennette observed, “In okpik’s hands, the English-language lyric’s usual associative distances are radically compressed, so that persons and animals are one, places are one, times are one. It is difficult to discuss separately time or space or form-of-being in Corpse Whale, as okpik renders all such boundaries fluid. Each poem is a plunge into deep water.”
Her debut poetry collection, Corpse Whale (2012), won the American Book Award. Her work has also been featured in Effigies: An Anthology of Indigenous Writing from the Pacific Rim (2009) and Sing: Poetry from the Indigenous Americas (2011).
A recipient of the Truman Capote Trust Scholarship, she has taught at the Institute for American Indian Arts and has served as a resident advisor for the Santa Fe (New Mexico) Indian School. She lives in Santa Fe.