Poet, critic, essayist, playwright, and fiction writer, Kimberly Blaeser is a professor at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she teaches creative writing and Native American literatures. Blaeser is the author of three collections of poetry: Apprenticed to Justice (2007), Absentee Indians & Other Poems (2002), and Trailing You (1994). Trailing You won the First Book Award for Poetry from the Native Writers' Circle of the Americas. In January, Blaeser was named Wisconsin Poet Laureate, 2015-2016.
Blaeser wrote the scholarly study, Gerald Vizenor: Writing in the Oral Tradition, which was the first native-authored book-length study of an Indigenous author. She edited the collections Stories Migrating Home: A Collection of Anishinaabe Prose and Traces in Blood, Bone, and Stone: Contemporary Ojibwe Poetry.
Her own poetry, short fiction, and essays have been widely anthologized, most recently in The Heath Anthology of American Literature. Her poetry has been translated into several languages, including Spanish, Norwegian, Indonesian, and French.
Blaeser is Anishinaabe, an enrolled member of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, and grew up on the White Earth Reservation in northwestern Minnesota.
She worked as a journalist before earning her MA and PhD from the University of Notre Dame. Blaeser lives with her husband and children in the woods and wetlands of rural Lyons Township, Wisconsin. Her other interests include wilderness expeditions and wildlife and nature photography. To feed these passions she spends part of every year in a remote cabin adjacent to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northeastern Minnesota.
Her current creative project features “Picto-Poems” and brings her nature and wildlife photography together with poetry to explore intersecting ideas about Native place, nature, preservation, and spiritual sustenance.
Photo credit: John Fisher
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