NEW YORK (AP) — Joy Harjo, who recently completed a three-year run as the country’s Poet Laureate, will release a picture book next spring.
Random House Children’s Books announced Wednesday that Harjo’s “Remember,” an adaptation of her famous poem of the same name, is scheduled for release on March 21, 2023. The book will feature illustrations by award-winning Michaela Goade.
“In simple and direct language, Harjo, a member of the Mvskoke nation, challenges readers to pay close attention to who they are, what world they were born into, and how all of Earth’s inhabitants are connected,” it reads in part the publisher’s announcement.
Published almost 40 years ago, the poem “Remember” is a tribute to the cosmos and our place in it. Admirers of “Remember” reach beyond the poetry community: NASA announced last year that some lines were included in a plaque/time capsule on a spacecraft headed for the Trojan asteroids orbiting Jupiter.
“’Remember’ is one of my earliest poems. It came together when I first became a poet and needed to remember what matters,” Harjo said in a statement. “Each of us needs spiritual sustenance to navigate this life of struggle and beauty. The poem has a life of its own. This poem has stayed with me for most of my life. It’s on a spaceship bound for Jupiter, it’s a song, dances were made out of it, and it’s translated into my Mvskoke language.”
Harjo, 71, was the first Native American to serve as Poet Laureate. Earlier this week, the Library of Congress announced that she would be replaced by Ada Limón. Goade’s illustrations for Carole Lindstrom’s We Are Water Protectors earned her a 2021 Caldecott Medal, the first time a Native American woman has received the prestigious children’s award.