I hope this excellent film introduces Wilma and her poetry to a gazillion new readers.
– Sherman Alexie
Down and Old Road: The Poetic Life of Wilma Elizabeth McDaniel is a lyrical portrait of poet Wilma McDaniel and the Okie culture that inspired her. Wilma came to California from Oklahoma as part of the great Dust Bowl Migration during the Depression. Like Steinbeck in the Grapes of Wrath, McDaniel has turned the experiences of the Okies into literature; unlike Steinbeck, she lived the.A lifelong recluse, Wilma published her first poem, from the collection she kept hidden in a shoebox under her bed, at the age of 52. McDaniel went on to be published by the prestigious Hanging Loose Press, among others. Her admirers include Pete Seeger, Sherman Alexie, and Bukowski. McDaniel’s work is a haunting commentary on heritage, spirituality and the power of everyday life. Down an Old Road paints a memorable portrait of this major American poet. 34 minutes.
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