The Music of Her Rivers pays homage to the rivers that taught the poet--the Rio Grande and the Chicago and Illinois Rivers. Sharp-eyed and empathetic, Golden serves as a witness, documenting place, history, and people, especially those left voiceless due to violence or discrimination--from the refugee border crossers of the Rio Grande to the Irish immigrants and former slaves struggling to build lives in Chicago in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Each poem captures the enduring challenges of Native peoples, laborers, naturalists, and immigrants through its haunting and consuming verse. Throughout the collection the nuanced representation of the landscape allows the rivers to become witnesses and actors themselves.
Renny Golden’s "Blood Desert: Witnesses 1820-1880", University of New Mexico Press, won the WILLA Literary Award for poetry 2011, was named a Southwest Notable Book of the Year 2012 and a Finalist for the New Mexico Book Award. She was a Pushcart nominee in 2016. She is currently Professor Emerita of Justice Studies at Northeastern Illinois University.