Widely hailed as a spiritual classic, this inspirational and unfailingly powerful story reveals the life and visions of the Lakota healer Nicholas Black Elk (1863–1950) and the tragic history of his Sioux people during the epic closing decades of the Old West. In 1930, the aging Black Elk met a kindred spirit, the famed poet, writer, and critic John G. Neihardt (1881–1973) on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.
"Tale of tears"
The exciting narrative begins in 1822, when Jedediah Smith ascended the Missouri River in the first fur-trading expedition of William H. Ashley and Andrew Henry, and ends in 1831, when he was killed by Comanche Indians on the Cimarron River.
"The Song of Hugh Glass" is the third poem in the Cycle. "The Song of Hugh Glass" (and also "The Song of Three Friends") deals in general with the ascent of the Missouri River and with characteristic adventures of Ashley-Henry men in the country of the Upper Missouri and the Yellowstone. Hugh Glass, a member of the Ashley-Henry men, lived an epic tale; mauled by a bear and left for dead by Henry's men, one of whom was his closest friend and comrade.
In 1908, the brilliant poet and writer John G. Neihardt traveled by canoe down the then-untamed Missouri River for 56 days. His account, rousing and elegantly reflective, showcases the long ago, fascinating world through which the mighty river passed. The River and I is at once a classic adventure tale, an enduring homage to the Old West, and a tale of an abiding love for a relentless river and those affected by it.
"The River and I"
Before Black Elk Speaks, before his epic poem "A Cycle of the West", John G. Neihardt wrote many short stories that found favor with readers and critics. Among his best were the 17 collected in Indian Tales and Others in 1926. "The Singer of the Ache", considered Neihardt's highest achievement in short fiction, portrays young Moon-Walker's quest for supernatural powers achieved at a price.
"Interesting collection of stories ..."
"The Song of Three Friends" is a resounding tribute to the intrepid explorers and mountain men who braved the western wilderness in the first decades of the 19th century. In 1822, 100 men of the Ashley Henry band left St. Louis bound for the beaver-rich rivers and streams of the great Northwest. With the trappers and voyageurs ascending the Missouri River, and the unlikely heroes of this tale were three great friends, Mike Fink, Will Carpenter, and Frank Talbeau.
John Neihardt, celebrated for his cycle of epic poems about the American West and for Black Elk Speaks, was in his nineties when he wrote this engaging book about growing up in the Midwest. All Is but a Beginning describes the people and events instrumental in shaping his later distinguished career as a poet; historian, and authority on Indians.
This volume is a continuation of the autobiography of John G. Neihardt All Is But a Beginning, offering a final glimpse into his fascinating life. Covering the years 1901-1908, he weaves a mosaic of personal fulfillment, joy and sorrow, reflecting on the successes and failures he experienced during his "mature" years. As only he could, Neihardt shares a mingling of romantic anecdotes alive with names and faces he sought out or fought for along the way.