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The poems in Fire Wheel dip in and out of family history and myth; the subjects of its poems are as varied as Helen of Troy, and Audrey, a Fury who makes her rounds at Laundromats, proclaiming the coming Armageddon. “I, too, am manmade, born of rib and / rayon,” says Audrey, “and I’ll tell you just what / your’e not above.” By turns elegiac and humorous, Fire Wheel’s poems also question the nature of family and identity. In “Poem for My Father, Once a Vacuum Cleaner Salesman, Now an Ascetic” a daughter reflects on her father, a man who abandons his family in search of spiritual enlightenment. “In which sage life/ will I find you?” she asks. “My Suicide Uncles” traces the crossing of immigrants between the old country and the new, and its sometimes devastating results. Whether the poems are about circus sideshow performers, delinquents, or mythic figures, the poems of Fire Wheel try to blend the real with the imagined, to find the place where the two worlds intersect to create an ever-shifting borderland of the self.
Slovenian Women's Stories on Migration
Going Places is a narrative of a century of Slovenian Women's immigration stories. The book traces the migration of these Eastern European women to several destinations including Argentina, Egypt, Italy, and the United States. The research has been carefully culled from the subjects' letters, personal diaries, and oral interviews. What results is a story that covers the span of three or four generations. The book highlights in biography the story of identity under construction. Each woman's identity surpasses ethnic, national identity or belonging, but at the same time, contains different elements of identity transformation at different stages of the narrator's life. As one participant said, "While their suitcases may be light with personal belongings, their stamina, strength and determination and emotional commitment would sink a battleship."
The Good Kiss is a collection of poems dealing loosely with the subjects of divorce, sexuality, and American culture from the 1950s to today. The poems vary in tone from the fairly serious to the reflective and meditative, to the wryly comic. Perhaps it is fair to say that this range of tones exists within many of the individual poems, and is their defining characteristic. Poems like "What I Want," and "The Good Kiss" are good examples of these quirky, rather unexpected tonal shifts and blendings.
In Half/Mask, Roger Mitchell goes in search of the magic that remains when the world is stripped down to “an inhospitable beauty.” Many of these starkly lyrical poems explore the human and natural communities found on tundra and borrow freely from the great narrative and sculptural traditions of the Inuit and other rugged people who have learned to live intensely under challenging conditions. Whether in the High Arctic or in different places “where human life . . . has a loose fit,” Mitchell discovers a land rich in imagery and metaphor for describing experience at a fundamental level, out at the edge of what we can know: “Alone and far away, remote, a step / or two beyond human, real being.” An effort to understand and sympathetically inhabit the earth drives these poems, even in the barren isolation of their settings, and gives to Half/Mask its emotional resonance.
Her Slender Dress, the first volume of poetry to win the Akron Poetry Prize, follows Virginia Woolf's advice to women writers: to move out of the sitting room and into reality. The staccato, often fragmented, syntax of these poems is an attempt to recreate an attitude of perception in which the postmodern female is "assaulted" by various stimuli with the dizzying speed made possible by the electronic age. The world now happens faster than it can possibly be integrated into an individual consciousness. The postmodern American reality for women consists of a society in which the confrontation with "the streets" (including drug abuse, sexual or physical abuse) can be as immediate, as influential as the previous zone of power and comfort, "home." But motherhood and marriage continue in importance, despite the changing cultural expectations. The title, taken from Blake's "Little Girl Lost" of the "Songs of Innocence," reflects the essential and unifying element of this book: Her Slender Dress is more than a Vogue magazine cover, but may be interpreted as Blake's simple, elegant image of female corporeality. And it is from the physical body, the slender dress, that both the pain and the joy of being female emanate.
His Captivity and Life with the Indians
A History of Jonathan Alder: His Captivity and Life with the Indians is one of the most extensive first person accounts to survive from Ohio’s pioneer and early settlement eras. Nine year-old Alder was captured and taken to Ohio by Indians in 1782. Adopted by a Mingo warrior and his Shawnee wife, Alder lived as an Indian until 1805. After he left the Indians, Alder became one of the first European settlers to live in central Ohio. Alder composed his memoirs in the 1840s. His account chronicles his life for fifty years, from the time of his capture to 1832. The narrative, therfore, provides a unique perspective on fronteir Ohio and its transformation from wilderness to statehood and the continuing evolution in the relationship between Ohio’s Indians and whites from the Revolutionary War-era to a time when many of the state’s Native peoples had been removed. Alder’s recollection provides an exceptional look at early Ohio. His portrait of his captors is revealing, complex, and sympathetic. The latter part of his narrative in which he describes his experiences in central Ohio is an extraordinary rich account of early pioneer life. Further, Alder was fortunate in that he encountered many of the persons and took part in many of the events that have become touchstones in Ohio’s pioneer history, including Simon Kenton, Simon Girty, and Col. William Crawford. He participated in the Battles of Fort Recovery and Fallen Timbers, and his recollection of these actions are among the few extant accounts that describe these events from a Native American perspective.
Nearly every poem in How We Spent Our Time flies at its mast a title in the form of a gerund or gerund phrase, that humble verbal noun. The book's table of contents, therefore, reads like an equally humble enumeration of the ways a human lifetime can be paid out, so to speak: looking, getting, owning, learning. We all do them all. And yet there is exceptional artistry in the testimonials these doings make witness to. The arrangement of the poems within the text is part of it. Note how "keeping" immediately precedes "spending," in the poems "Keeping It Together" and "Spending the Night"; these poems are conversational but endlessly skilful in the ways they keep the language vivid and fresh and surprising. How We Spent Our Time is flush with pangs and satisfactions, abundant with wisdom and delight.
Hurricane Party is an original and rewarding work, a masterful follow-up to Big Muddy River of Stars, and a livewire, compelling contribution to American poetry. No other poet sounds like Pelegrin, and that's the sure sign of a writer at the top of her game. —Elton Glaser
I Have My Own Song for It: Modern Poems of Ohio gathers together 117 poems by 85 poets for a fresh perspective on the Buckeye State. Not since 1911 has there been a comprehensive collection of poems written about Ohio. And this anthology is especially relevant as Ohio celebrates its 200th year as a state. It could be called Ohio’s bicentennial gift to itself. These poems, written by such celebrated Ohio natives as James Wright and Mary Oliver, and by accomplished if less well known poets like Ruth L. Schwartz and Rachel Langille, offer a virtual tour of people and places in the state, traveling around Ohio’s lakes and rivers, farms and open country, small towns and large cities. In resonant language and compelling imagery, in shapely verse and lines responsive to the moment’s impulse, the poems bring Ohio to its citizens and, beyond the borders of the state, to lovers of poetry everywhere. The perspective may be personal or historical, close-up or wide-ranging, celebratory or otherwise, but each poem becomes part of the state’s legacy passed on to future generations, a collective record of how Ohio appears to itself and to others at the begining of the 21st century.
Controlling Cultural Eutrophication 1960s-1990s
During the 1960s, inland bodies of water in North America and Europe experienced a dangerous transformation. Nutrients were dumped into the lakes, causing chain reactions which severely impacted on lake environments. The excessive increase into inland waters through human activity, known as cultural eutrofication, emerged as a dominant problem. Massive algae blooms drifted in overnourished lakes, depleting oxygen, damaging fish stocks, and transforming the water's ecosystem. In Lake Erie Rehabilitated, historian William McGucken presents a comprehensive account of the most notorious international incident of cultural eutrophication---Lake Erie. With the assistance of the International Joint Commission, Canada and the United States diagnosed phosphorous as the primary cause of the problem and, in a unique cooperative effort, reduced input to the lake from municipal and industrial wastewater plants and agricultural lands. Public pressure and government regulation encouraged the reluctant detergent industry to produce alternative detergents and, finally, reduced the input of phosphorous to targeted levels. Lake Erie is now rehabilitated, but its history over the last three decades demonstrates the importance of maintaining an environmental balance. Meticulously researched and documented, this book will appeal to environmentalists, historians, and readers who seek to understand the Great Lakes ecosystem, environmental issues, and environmental regulation.