Roberta Hill Whiteman

Roberta Hill Whiteman Poems

"Hi, guy," said I to a robin
perched on a pole in the middle
of the garden. Pink and yellow

They are a gift I have wanted again.
Wanted: One moment in mountains
when winter got so cold

In the cubbyhole entrance to Cornell and Son,
a woman in a turquoise sweater
curls up to sleep. Her right arm seeks

"It isn't a game for girls,"
he said, grabbing a fifth
with his right hand,
the wind with his left.

I scratch earth around timpsila
on this hill, while below me,
hanging in still air, a hawk

White horses, tails high, rise from the cedar.
Smoke brings the fat crickets,
trembling breeze.

House of five fires, you never raised me.
Those nights when the throat of the furnace
wheezed and rattled its regular death,
I wanted your wide door,

Stoplights edged the licorice street with ribbon,
neon embroidering wet sidewalks. She turned
into the driveway and leaped in the dark. A blackbird

Roberta Hill Whiteman Biography

Roberta Hill Whiteman (born 1947) is an Oneida poet from Wisconsin. She is known for the collections Star Quilt (1984) and Philadelphia Flowers (1996). She received the 1991 Wisconsin Idea Foundation's Excellence Award. She was born Roberta Hill in 1947 into the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. She lived with her family on the reservation and also in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Her father was a musician. She attended local schools. Long interested in languages and story, Hill earned a BA in creative communication from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, an MA in fine arts from the University of Montana, and a PhD in American Studies from the University of Minnesota. Her doctoral thesis was a biography and study of her paternal grandmother, Lillie Rosa Minoka Hill, a Mohawk who was the second Native American woman to earn a medical degree in the United States. She married an Oneida man and in 1905 moved with him from Philadelphia to the Wisconsin reservation. Minoka Hill lived there for decades, operating a "kitchen clinic" in her home.)

The Best Poem Of Roberta Hill Whiteman

Morning Talk

"Hi, guy," said I to a robin
perched on a pole in the middle
of the garden. Pink and yellow
firecracker zinnias, rough green
leaves of broccoli,
and deep red tomatoes on dying stems
frame his still presence.

"I've heard you're not
THE REAL ROBIN. Bird watchers have
agreed," I said."THE REAL ROBIN
lives in England. They claim
your are misnamed and that we ought
to call you ‘a red-breasted thrush'
because you are

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