Deena Metzger is a poet, novelist, essayist, playwright, storyteller and healer. Story is her Medicine.
Her latest novels are A Rain of Night Birds, Feral and La Negra y Blanca, . La Negra y Blanca won the 2012 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Excellence in Literature. A Rain of Night Birds is concerned with Climate Collapse. The novel reveals the relationship between the colonizing mind that enacted genocide on the Indigenous people of the Americas and the consequent ecocide we are witnessing. In 2019, she published the seminal essay, Meeting Extinction: Grave Affliction or Possibility. She is devoted to creating sanctuary for the natural world and a future for all beings.
The novels The Other Hand and Doors: A Fiction for Jazz Horn, and her new and selected poems, Ruin and Beauty are published by Red Hen Press.
Other books include Skin: Shadows/Silence A Love Letter in the Form of a Novel, What Dinah Thought and The Woman Who Slept With Men to Take the War Out of Them that is in the volume Tree: Essays and Pieces, that features the celebrated Warrior Poster on its cover. Tree testifies to a woman’s triumph over breast cancer. It is an example of her many formal and spiritual explorations imagining a literature responsive to the complexities and necessities of our time, especially the value of actively respecting the numerous voices that constitute an ecology of mind attuned to a sacred universe.
Writing For Your Life: A Guide and Companion to the Inner Worlds is a text that articulates these possibilities for fellow writers and as do her plays Not As Sleepwalkers and Dreams Against the State. She co-edited an anthology, Intimate Nature: The Bond Between Women and Animals, one of the first testimonies to the reality and nature of animal intelligence. Entering the Ghost River: Meditations on the Theory and Practice of Healing and From Grief into Vision: A Council examine the tragic failure of contemporary culture and provide guidance for personal, political, environmental and spiritual healing.
A radical thinker on behalf of the natural world and planetary survival, a teacher of writing and healing practices for almost 50 years, a writer and activist profoundly concerned with peacemaking, restoration and sanctuary for a beleagured world, she is basing her work now on the ideas outlined in the posting, “19 Ways to the 5th World.” She also teaches a program, A Training for the 5th World. With writer, Michael Ortiz Hill,she introduced Daré to North America in 1999. Daré is a unique form of individual and community healing based on indigenous medicine traditions and contemporary wisdom.
Deena convenes ReVisioning Medicine, collaboration in diagnosis and treatment between medical people and medicine people, physicians and healers to create a medicine which does no harm. She is also Senior Advisor to the NGO, Everyday Gandhis that supports grassroots and indigenous peacebuilding activities in Liberia and West Africa.
As a spiritual practitioner, Deena is devoted to the Pathless Path and the No Enemy Way.