Finnish North American Literature Association
Jim Johnson was born in northern Minnesota where he currently lives and works.
Johnson, Jim. Driving Gravel Roads. Red Dragonfly Press, 2009.
Read a review here.
Johnson, Jim. Dovetailed Corners. Prose Poems by Jim Johnson. Photographs by
Marlene Wisuri and J. C. Hendricks. Duluth, MN: Holy Cow! Press, 1996.
Johnson, James A. Finns in Minnesota Midwinter. St. Cloud, MN: North Star Press
of St. Cloud, Inc., 1986.
---. Wolves. Minneapolis, MN: New Rivers Press, 1993. Winner of Minnesota
---. A Field Guide to Blueberries. St. Cloud, MN: North Star Press of St. Cloud,
---. Coop Label. Duluth, MN: Dovetailed Press, 2005.
---. “Getting Off the Train at Brimson.” In Michael Karni and Aili Jarvenpa, editors,
Sampo the Magic Mill: A Collection of Finnish-American Writing. Minneapolis, MN:
New Rivers Press, 1989.
---. “The Return of the Shaman, Later the Weather Report” and “John Calovis
Goes to Russia.” In Red, White, and a Paler Shade of Blue: Poems on the Finnish
American Experience. Rhinelander, WI: Tamarack Publishing for FinnFest USA '96,
---. “Skeletons,” “At Eagle Lake,” and “Mojakka.” In Michael Karni and Aili
Jarvenpa, editors, Sampo the Magic Mill: A Collection of Finnish-American Writing.
Minneapolis, MN: New Rivers Press, 1989.
Johnson’s Poetry and Wisuri’s Photos: A Balance of Truth and Art
by Beth L. Virtanen, PhD
(This is a condensed version of a review that appeared originally in the Finnish
American Reporter. To view the full review article, see their website at the following
The Co-op Label, the latest collaboration by Jim Johnson and Marlene Wisuri,
balances truth and art at the most essential and fundamental levels. The truth, in
the Johnson’s words, lets us to know where and who we are in this world, where
and who we have been:
If there can be said to be some business that is conducted by a
poetic/photographic text, it is thus: the cooperative—that is the cooperation of
human beings—is a venture in which we need to reinvest. The work in three parts
traces the process of immigration, the asserted and contested communist
sentiments of the 1950s, and questions of the utility of co-operation that was a part
of the past but which might be reasserted in our future. In the preface to the work
the authors say it best. : “This [the Co-operative Movement], we think, is a past
that more and more needs reinvention.”
This remarkable and beautiful text that incorporates poetry and photography, Co-
op Label, is published by Dovetailed Press LLC of Duluth, Minnesota, and is
available at North Wind Books on the campus of Finlandia University.