Review: Tales From the Whispering Basket by Larry Spotted Crow Mann

March 18, 2013

LarrySpottedCrow1

He begins with his Native Nipmuck tongue-

Wunne-Nog-Kishkoad-Tuonk! “Greetings, glad you’re here!”

I had the honor of attending the AWP 2013 Association of Writers and Writing Programs in Boston a few weeks ago and here Larry Spotted Crow Mann say this in person. He belongs to a group, WHIM Old School Indian Reading, featuring Monty Campbell, Jr., Barbara Mann, Paul Hapenny, Stephanie Elliott, Larry S Mann- and most used their native American names. Meet the new Indian Movement: W.H.I.M. (Woodlands Horizon Indian Movement for the politically correct and Woodlands Hotties Indian Movement for those who can still laugh). This multi-genre reading panel is comprised of Old School Woodlands Indians who read from their works and Larry Spotted Crow Mann performed the sacred drum song.

Hearing Larry play and sing a drum song was AWESOME! It was moving. His book is also moving.

Tales From the Whispering Basket is a book for all ages. Plain and Simple. His stories drafted from long passed down oral stories of generation Nipmuck to Nipmuck child from family and friends should be a task admired. I am currently collecting my oral memory stories told at gathering and from my own family members, and it is a hard  task to compile details without muddling them up. Children should have this book in their hands, I would say reading ages and up. You may laugh when I say this, but it is in big print compared to some books I have in possession- a plus for the over 50 crowd (and I am smiling, but hey its true!)

The book starts off with a very well written introduction and goes into short stories- Deal Me In is a great read for those of us who like a slice of mystery with our slide of hand. A stranger knocks on the door while his Nipmuck clan play cards…  Once again, a great read for young and old alike. Three more stories, and I don’t want to give it all away, then he goes into telling the story of how baskets play an important role in his tribes history and I suspect many tribes history. It is a heartwarming story which chronicles the journey of a sacred Nipmuck basket and how it affects everyone who come in contact with it; speaking real and painful issues facing native people yesterday and today.

Now to the meat- Larry’s Poetry- ‘I Have Been Here Before’…

…Ah Yes,
I have been here.
Half eaten worms have joined forces to extricate the nonbelievers.
Sanity stored and hidden in the usual place.
Hidden to self, for itself…

Gems of prose are weaved throughout each piece, like his ancestors baskets, and stories. Before I saw Larry read, I had wondered how I could bring the Native American tongue to these pages. Not wanting to be all about the great American Cowboy heroes, I am glad he consented to sharing his voice within Cowboy Poetry Press. Not because I feel the cowboy and Indian need to stand side by side, but because the culture is rich and should be shared, and in that way stand side by side.

Everyone’s side of the story needs to be told. I want to wipe out the old western shows which stung my mind with false history, eradicate Hollywood’s crap, and sit within the pow wow of my own native heritage (Cherokee Nation) and soak it all in. We can all learn from past mistakes to blessings. Larry’s book is one of many I hope to bring to the circle.

Larry’s book is the first of his journey into writing, and quite a delightful read, as said a few paragraphs ago, for young to old ages. Visit his website, Larry Spotted Crow Mann- Whispering Basket, where you can purchase his book and read more! We hope Larry will graciously submit works, along with his other brothers and sisters I met at AWP!

BasketBook

Photo from top of reveiw, above, was  willfully and graciously given for use by Larry Spotted Crow Mann for use on Cowboy Poetry Press site, no one has permission to take it for their own personal use. Permission must be given by photo owner, Larry Spotted Crow himself, written permission may  be made through his contact on Whispering Basket website.

Photo on bottom, above, is proof the author Elizabeth Akin Stelling, managing editor of Cowboy Poetry Press, whom read this book; if you notice, my computer corner and bed coverings could not be totally edited, the book finds no rest on my nightstand.

One Response to “Review: Tales From the Whispering Basket by Larry Spotted Crow Mann”


  1. […] Read the review- Tales of the Whispering Basket by Larry Spotted Crow Mann […]


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