Saturday, March 28, 2009

March 27, 2009 Listen to Thomas Lux Talk about Poetry on the Paula Gordon Show .I Don't Know who Paula Gordon Is but Thomas Lux is a Unique Poet

God Particles is my introduction to Thomas Lux' poems. I am not sure how I feel about them. I do know that the title poem "God Particles" made an impression on me. I too wonder if God takes pity on us humans for our inadequacies.

The poems in God Particles do not shy away from the depressing and the ugly. Despite this they are life affirming to read. They are compassionate poems.

Here is a poem from the book

The Hungry Gap-Time

late August, before the harvest, every one of us worn down
by the plow, the hoe, rake,
and worry over rain.
Chicken coop confiscated
by the rats and the raptors
with nary a mouse to hunt. The corn's too green and hard,
and the larder's down
to dried apples
and double-corned cod. We lie on our backs
and stare at the blue;
our work is done, our bellies flat.
The mold on the wheat killed hardly a sheaf.
The lambs fatten on the grass, our pigs we set
to forage on their own—they'll be back
when they whiff the first shucked ears
of corn. Albert's counting
bushels in his head
to see if there's enough to ask Harriet's father
for her hand. Harriet's father
is thinking about Harriet's mother's bread
pudding. The boys and girls
splash in the creek,
which is low but cold. Soon, soon
there will be food
again, and from what our hands have done
we shall live another year here
by the river
in the valley
above the fault line
beneath the mountain.

Thomas Lux

God Particles
Houghton Mifflin

I really liked what Thomas Lux says about poetry in this interview on the Paula Gordon Show.

Lux gives credit to performance poetry for our culture's recent renewed interest in poetry and talks about why poets write.

Read the rest-Audio Interview

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Blogger's Unite * Women's History Month- Immigration

My grandmother as a young woman

People came to the U.S. seeking freedom of expression and economic opportunity in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century (THE SECOND WAVE: European Immigration from 1850-1920).

My grandmother was one of these people. She immigrated from Lithuania with her parents and sister. Later in her life at the age of fifty due to financial hardship, she opened her own business and in the spirit of many immigrants achieved her own American Dream as a small business owner.

My grandmother worked hard. She had an independent spirit. She represents to me all the hard working women who came to the United States from Ireland, Germany, China, Italy, Eastern Europe during this wave of immigration who paved the way for more equal rights for all women in the U.S. These women who worked in factories, shops, were housewives, supported their husbands' dreams, and or manifested dreams of their own are role models for women of all ages. Many young women in the United States today do not know what their grandmothers and great grandmothers went through to be able to work, vote, or garner equality.

Check these sites out to learn more about the "famous" and "not famous" remarkable women who paved the way for us all. In the twenty-first century women and their families are immigrating to the U.S. They will contribute to the ongoing story of History in new and unique ways.

Photo Essay

Gifts of Age: Portraits and Essays of 32 Remarkable Women

by Charlotte Painter


Women Make Movies Films by and about Women
A Place Called Home - Women and Immigration

"This extraordinary collection features titles that celebrate the lives and achievements of immigrants in the U.S. and explore ongoing struggles of immigrants today. Includes new release MOTHERLAND and the acclaimed ADIO KERIDA (GOODBYE DEAR LOVE)"


Emma Lazarus, Poet of the Huddled Masses

by Jacki Lyden

"In her poem The New Colossus, Emma Lazarus created what stood for years as an American credo. You know the words: "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free..."

The words of the poem were engraved on a bronze plaque hung in the Statue of Liberty museum 20 years after her death. To many, the verse expressed the governing U.S. attitude toward immigrants: welcome. But today, a new debate over immigration is dominating the political debate."

Read the rest

Miriam's Daughters: Jewish Latin American Women Poets
Majorie Agosín

Not only have I carried and continue to carry the languages of my ancestors, but I have also many names. Because I was born in the United States, my mother named me Marjorie, like the character in Howard Fast's novel Marjorie Morningstar. In Chile I was called Margarita; at home Magita; and at the Hebrew school, Miriam.
- Marjorie Agosín -

Let Me Tell You Where I’ve Been :New Writing by Women of the Iranian Diaspora

Edited by Persis M. Karim
Foreword by Al Young
A powerful collection that speaks to history, immigration, and the emergence of a new international literary voice

Other Links of Interest

Immigration Learning Page Library of Congress

The Statue of Liberty: Ellis Island Foundation- Inc.

Karen Tei Yamashita Novelist- Brazil- Maru

Interview with Karen Tei Yamashita