Dog Road Woman

Poetry by Allison Hedge Coke

April 1, 1997 • 6 x 9 • 96 pages • 978-1-56689-061-8

Autobiographical sketch of Hedge Coke, a mixed-blood woman, presented in her debut collection of poems.

In her debut collection of poems, which received the American Book Award in 1998, Allison Adelle Hedge Coke presents an autobiographical sketch of a contemporary mixed-blood native life. These poems recount surviving diaspora, domestic violence, racism, and an extraordinary number of challenges. By drawing upon a variety of poetic and prosaic forms, Hedge Coke simulates and transforms the rhythms and sounds of her people. She weaves the shapes and patterns of her heritage into a magnificent tapestry of prayer, story, and song. Dog Road Woman is a sublime presentation of the strength, beauty, and spirit of the nations.

About the Author

Allison Adelle Hedge Coke is the author of the American Book Award-winning debut collection Dog Road Woman and the memoir Rock, Ghost, Willow Deer (University of Nebraska Press). Growing up in North Carolina, Canada, and throughout the Great Plains, Hedge Coke earned her MFA at Vermont College and joined the faculty of Northern Michigan University in January 2005.


“Hedge Coke’s dense narrative poems are crowded with memorable characters and situations. . . . She is a welcome new voice in American poetry.” —Jessica Hagedorn

“Allison Hedge Coke is a skilled, spirited, young poet who is transforming and honing her social and personal experience and reflection to speak with the voice of a whole people.” —Amiri Baraka

“These are the songs of righteous anger and utter beauty.” —Joy Harjo

“These poems have so much to say that they can’t talk fast enough, and this poet is not afraid to speak the dangerous truth.” —Linda Hogan