There are times in a parent’s life when they ask why am I doing this? It’s so hard.. That is, until those occasions of magic happen, and they always do. Parenthood is a journey with no road map. And it is the children who most often steer the ship. In her new collection of poetry, Essential Ingredients, Carol Rose GoldenEagle recalls when Creator’s blessings have truly been bestowed in a parent’s shared life with their children. Poems examine hardship and struggle, triumph of spirit and joy, and serve as a reminder to all parents that childhood is fleeting. This beautiful volume is a celebration of parenthood, in the form of love letters to the poet’s children. It is ultimately a tribute to the memories of those many magic moments which define love, purpose, and pride.
“Cree and Dene author Carol Rose GoldenEagle’s collection, Essential Ingredients, carries a womb-filled with wisdom, and is a poetic portrait of motherhood, love, food and family. It’s a humble offering which charts the relationship of a single mother and her three children, featuring recipes for moose stew, bannock, and retraces both the tender and painful memories of life.”
—Shannon Webb-Campbell, author of I Am A Body Of Land)
“Looking back at what it means to be a single mother and Cree, Carol Rose Goldeneagle’s poems, recipes and other writings in Essential Ingredients are always heartfelt. A natural speaking rhythm to the snippets of memoir and poems (brought out by anaphora, syncopated end-rhyme or refrain) reminds this reader of the drum (and the heart beat!) We enter an entrancing symbolism and numerology that shapes the entries—favourites are the number 4 (seasons, directions, the four herbs used in a smudge etc.) and 7, for the number of spots on a lady bug, which corresponds to seven Cree virtues that also find their qualities associated with seven prairie animals. Delight and tongue-in-cheek humour are never far from this mother’s writing, as when on Mother’s Day “precious years ago” she is presented with breakfast in bed or when she overhears her children in a serious debate in the backseat while she is driving. Who would be the better “cousin,” Johnny Cash or Michael Jackson, and Cash wins. Essential Ingredients is a page-turner of a memoir, and so enriched by the artwork of Goldeneagle herself.”
—Gillian Harding-Russell, author of In Another Air