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 […]

LitStack Rec: my name on his tongue & Hild

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my name on his tongue, by Laila Halaby In the climate of inflamed rhetoric about immigrants that has predominated in this election year, a small, quiet book like Laila Halaby’s my name on his tongue can speak volumes. In her first book of poetry, published in 2012, Halaby mines issues […]

2016 Pushcart Prize XL: Best of the Small Presses & John Saturnall’s Feast

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2016 Pushcart Prize XL: Best of the Small Presses, edited by Bill Henderson with Pushcart Prize editors There are best-of anthologies I look forward to each year—short stories, essays, travel writing—most of which are contained in the volumes published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. These are reliably excellent reading and the […]

LitStack Recs: Brooklyn & 3 Sections

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Brooklyn, by Colm Toibin Toibin’s 2009 novel, which won that year’s Costa Award, is a lovely and haunting story set in 1950s Dublin and New York. It tells of Eilis Lacey, born and raised in Enniscorthy, in Ireland’s County Wexford, and her immigration to the United States as a young […]

LitStack Recs: Without & Old Venus

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

LitStack Review: The Tutor by Andrea Chapin

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The Tutor Andrea Chapin Riverhead Books Release Date:  February 5, 2015 ISBN 978-1-59463-254-9 Author Andrea Chapin is a brave woman.  She’s taken the “lost years” of William Shakespeare, and made him a character in her novel set in Lancashire England in 1590 (two years before we start to see the […]

LitStack Rec: Spring and All & Wonderbook

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 Spring and All, William Carlos Willams In the frenzy that was my final term of grad school, I signed up for a seminar on Spring and All, by the classic American poet, William Carlos Williams. It would have been fine had I been studying poetry, but I was on the […]

LitStack Recs: my name on his tongue & Never Let Me Go

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my name on his tongue, by Laila Halaby In her first book of poetry, published in 2012, Halaby mines issues of identity, geography and the dislocation that comes from inhabiting two worlds. Halaby, the author of two novels, and recipient of a PEN/Beyond Margins Award, calls this volume a memoir […]

Gimbling in the Wabe – The Importance of the Nonsensical

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In today’s modern world, it’s so very difficult to escape Things Being Important.  Climate change, partisan politics, international tensions, terrorism.  They come at us from every angle, screaming for attention.  But it’s not just things in conflict:  professional sports scores and stars, maintaining optimum health, box office receipts, effective parenting, […]