Culture Spotlight

A poem in honor of Indigenous Peoples Day

|From Poems from Here on Maine Public Radio|

Our home is this country, a poem by Micmac poet and songwriter Rita Joe, spoken by Penobscot Nation Museum director Jennifer Neptune.

Rita Joe was born on Cape Breton Island and lived in East Bay, Nova Scotia until her death in 2007. She was the author of Poems of Rita Joe, L’nu and Indians We’re Called, Songs of Eskasoni, and We are the Dreamers Recent and early poems (Breton Books). She was awarded the Order of Canada. She began writing poetry after her children came home from grade school with homework that she thought was derogatory in its depiction of native people.


This poem is part of a series for Maine’s Bicentennial developed by Maine Poet Laureate, Stuart Kestenbaum. Thanks to cinematographer Lindsay MannBeechwood Film, LLC. Audio by Jason Mann You can see all of the films at Maine Public’s Bicentennial website and from time to time on Maine Public Television. Thanks to Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance, Maine Public Television, Maine Bicentennial Commission, Maine Arts Commission, Lunder Foundation and Libra Foundation for their support.


Also read Laura Fralich’s recent reflections on the Blockhouse and the native people who occupied this land before white settlers arrived from Gloucester, MA in the mid 18th century.