Susan Sheppard was a prolific poet from Parkersburg, West Virginia, whose work had been published in over 100 magazines. A descendant of the Blackfoot-Saponi and Lenape-Shawnee tribes, Sheppard wrote poetry imbued with her unique brand of Appalachian mysticism for over 40 years. In 1998, she was awarded a Poetry Fellowship from West Virginia Arts & Humanities and in 2005 she received the Edgar Allan Poe Memorial Poetry Prize. She was named first runner up for the Maureen Egen Writers Exchange Award in 2019. Her poetry chapbook, Balefire, was published in 2015 by Crisis Chronicles Press. Sheppard was also the author of four non-fiction books, one novel and two very popular card decks. She taught and facilitated the Sacred Way Poetry Group in Parkersburg for many years.
Susan Sheppard (1955–2021) was “Black Dutch,” meaning that she was descended from the less than 850 Shawnee Indians who remained east of the Mississippi River after the other Shawnee (during the “Trail of Tears” removal) were forced onto reservations out west in the 1830s. Susan, along with others in the Friend family, was a direct descendent of Shawnee Chief Big Thunder through his daughter, Bright Lightning, whose name was anglicized to “Anna Friend.”
59 vividly haunting poems by Susan Sheppard
6” x 9” 95 pages