Thick Indigenous Women

we are curves spilling stories / against your lips

Tenille Campbell, the poet, smiles at the camera while wrapped in a shawl against a forest-green background.
The Walrus

thick indigenous women
are spilled beads and tangled thread
complicated but worth the effort

we are curves spilling stories
against your lips
our thighs are soft muskeg
protecting good medicines
our skin soft as tanned hide
touch us with consent
and you are touching
our ancestor’s wildest dreams

thick indigenous women
are the feast during a long hard winter
canned raspberries fresh bannock
warm butter dripping between your fingers
come and eat

we hold joy in every round shoulder
laugh loudly drawing all eyes
we squeeze against you
and you hold us tight
smiling at your blessings

thick indigenous women
are magic and if you aren’t careful
someone else will pick up spilled beads
and untangle threads

Tenille Campbell
Tenille Campbell is a Dene/Métis author and photographer from English River First Nation, Saskatchewan. She is the author of the poetry book #IndianLovePoems.

Enjoy What You’re Reading?

Fact-based journalism is our passion and your right.

We feature Canadian voices and expertise on stories that travel beyond our shores, and we firmly believe that this reporting can change the world around us. The Walrus covers it all with originality, depth, and thoughtfulness, bringing diverse perspectives to bear on essential conversations while setting the highest bar for fact-checking and rigour.

We’re asking readers like you to support The Walrus so we can continue to lead the Canadian conversation.
Every contribution makes a difference.
Please support The Walrus today. Thank you.
Donations of $20 or more will receive a charitable tax receipt.