Poem by Fidel Frank
This year is like a Burn to Emerge.
Béénashniih, I remember
Mrs. John’s science
class field trip.
Something weird about school at night.
Ask anyone from Shiprock:
What’s “Area 7?”
Don’t drive NAPI road
I want to watch Chills with
Aarif Rahman. Delusional.
Mis demonios se esconden. Cada noche.
My demons hide. Every single night.
I cringe at my early works.
I used to call my life a nightmare.
Now, it is a story going accordingly.
I keep dreams to myself more.
What is another closed door?
“Diné Nishłį́. Kinya’áanii nishłį́, Tódích’íi’nii báshíshchiin, Tábąąhá dashíchei, Tł’ááshchí’í dashínáłí.” Fidel Frank is Diné. His clan is Towering House clan. He is born for Bitter Water. His maternal grandfather’s clan is Water’s Edge and paternal grandfather is Red Bottom People.
He founded a community group called Diné Introspective in 2016 while being the first member to complete his time at Shiprock AmeriCorps. He has been volunteering at the Healing Circle Drop-In Center (also located in Shiprock) since 2013. He helps with community events, like Restoring and Celebrating Family Wellness. Recently, he held an online founder’s event, on 2/22/22, with the assistance of IAIA Counseling Team for his project, Tooh Haltsóí: Unfiltered. His creativity utilizes multimedia for mental health issues, LGBTQ, eating disorders, and preserving Diné k’éjí. He is the photographer for Łizhin/Łigai Photography. His photography was featured in Narrative Witness 2016 (international art exchange of Native Peoples in United States and Australia).
Fidel learns from k’é: family and friends.