LitStack Rec: Green Thoughts & Renascence and Other Poems

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Green Thoughts: A Writer in the Garden, by Eleanor Perényi Writing and gardening share similarities: the same dogged tending, the cultivating of a certain turf, the attention to seeing that small things grow, and to not letting them get unwieldy. Virginia Woolf and Beatrix Potter both famously tended gardens, but Eleanor Perényi is in a [….]

Litstack Rec: my name on his tongue & Baseball’s Great Experiment

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Presenting another installment celebrating #NationalPoetryMonth: my name on his tongue, by Laila Halaby Laila Halaby’s, my name on his tongue, her first book of poetry, published in 2012, mines issues of identity, geography and the dislocation that comes from inhabiting two worlds. Halaby, the author of two novels and the recipient of a PEN/Beyond Margins [….]

Litstack Rec: Without & Feed

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Without, by Donald Hall In celebration of National Poetry Month It doesn’t matter what I’m doing or what time of day or night it is, when I pick up this collection, I read it from first page to last. Published in 1998, Without traces the illness and death from leukemia of Hall’s wife, the poet [….]

Litstack Rec: Fruits & Vegetables, Poems & Ninefox Gambit

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Fruits & Vegetables, Poems by Erica Jong In celebration of #NationalPoetryMonth Long before Fear of Flying, before Erica Jong’s now-classic novel portrayed the freedom of the seventies with a knowing and irreverent voice, the author wrote a small book of poetry titled Fruits & Vegetables. After Fear of Flying was released in 1973, the novel [….]

Litstack Review: And There Was Evening And There Was Morning, by Mike Smith

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And There was Evening And There Was Morning, Essays on Illness, Loss, and Love, by Mike Smith (WTAW Press) “Mourning,” Hilary Mantel wrote, “is work. It is not simply being sad. It is naming your pain. It is witnessing the sorrow of others, drawing out the shape of loss.” Who among us, when grieving, is [….]

Gimbling in the Wabe – “The Journey” by Mary Oliver

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For the final Gimbling in the Wabe of this year’s National Poetry Month, I am highlighting a poet who, to me, epitomizes the music that swells inside of us, that is both deeply personal and yet encompasses the omniscience of the beauty and solace of the natural world: Mary Oliver. Winner of both the Pulitzer [….]

LitStack Rec: How to Grow Old Disgracefully & Life on Mars

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How to Grow Old Disgracefully: An Autobiography, by Hermione Gingold If you’re a fan of classic films, say, Vincente Minnelli’s 1958 musical, Gigi, or classic stagings of Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, you already know Hermione Gingold, the earthy actress with the husky voice and wicked sense of irony. Otherwise, Gingold is likely a mystery, [….]

Gimbling in the Wabe – “Renascence” by Edna St. Vincent Millay

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Edna St. Vincent Millay was already a published poet in her teen years, but it was at age nineteen when she submitted her poem, Renascence, to a contest run by The Lyric Year that the world sat up and took notice – not because it won, but because it didn’t. Ms. Millay’s work – clearly [….]

Gimbling in the Wabe – “Home” by Warsan Shire

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April is National Poetry Month, and in honor of that I am stepping a bit out of my comfort zone and posting poems that have spoken to me personally. This week, I give to you a powerful and heart breaking poem by Warsan Shire, a poet and activist who was born in Kenya to Somali [….]

Gimbling in the Wabe – Allowables by Nikki Giovanni

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It’s April, which has been declared National Poetry Month; a celebration of poetry created in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets as a way to increase awareness and appreciation of poetry in the United States. I’m not a poetry aficionado; much of it is way over my head. But some of it – oh, [….]