The poet James Welch died at the age of 62. Here is all you want to know, and more!
Biography - A Short Wiki
An American writer and poet, he was a founding author of the Native American Renaissance. His best-known works include the 1986 novel, Fools Crow, and the 1971 poetry collection, Riding the Earthboy.
He was descended from both the Blackfeet and Gros Ventre Native American tribes. He married Lois Welch and settled in Missoula, Montana.
The cause was a heart attack, his family said; he learned he had lung cancer in October. Mr. Welch grew up on an Indian reservation, determined to become a writer and put into words the stresses on a people left out of the American dream.
I do believe in the viability of Indian spiritualism.
I used to object to being called an Indian writer, and would always say I was a writer who happened to be an Indian, and who happened to write about Indians.
The economic piece is still missing, since it’s so hard to attract industry to reservations, but spiritually and educationally, they’re doing just fine. Each tribe has a community college now, and they teach the language, they teach the traditions.
I think ethnic and regional labels are insulting to writers and really put restrictions on them. People don’t think your work is quite as universal.
The townspeople outside the reservations had a very superior attitude toward Indians, which was kind of funny, because they weren’t very wealthy; they were on the fringes of society themselves.