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“Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum is not a poet of small ambition. He reaches after big subjects in the high style, and—mirabile dictu—he brings it off. There is something of Walt Whitman in McFadyen-Ketchum. He is a rhapsodist spinning words into a musical web. Line by line the poems pulse with verbal energy. His language is all meat and muscle. And yet, at the heart of the poems, one finds not simply a literary performance but a tender alertness to the world.” —Dana Gioia, author of Pity the Beautiful: Poems and Interrogations at Noon: Poems
“A most useful guide to a subject that has long been neglected, and McGhee deserves high marks for the tremendous amount of research that obviously was required.” —Journal of America’s Military Past “Deeply researched, skillfully compiled and deftly organized, and remarkably complete . . . authoritative.” —Civil War Books and Authors “This well organized and authoritative reference work reflects years of painstaking research, verification of details, and extremely careful editing.” —T. Michael Parrish, Baylor University
“The past is a flame you must learn to hold / your hand above,” Eric Leigh writes in this first volume of poems, a poignant meditation on the harm that we can and cannot keep from those we love, and the harm that cannot be kept from us. Taking place in both the rural and the urban, in fields and on sidewalks, in gay bars and in laboratories, with topics as diverse and powerful as a father's suicide, a mother's resilience, coming out, lost love and the continuing plight of HIV, Leigh’s poems locate the heartbreaking music in these struggles.
In 1981, James F. Cherry embarked on what evolved into a passionate, personal quest to identify and document all the known headpots of Mississippian Indian culture from northeast Arkansas and the bootheel region of southeast Missouri. Produced by two groups the Spanish called the Casqui and Pacaha and dating circa AD 1400–1700, headpots occur, with few exceptions, only in a small region of Arkansas and Missouri. Relatively little is known about these headpots: did they portray kinsmen or enemies, the living or the dead or were they used in ceremonies, in everyday life, or exclusively for the sepulcher? Cherry’s decades of research have culminated in the lavishly illustrated The Headpots of Northeast Arkansas and Southern Pemiscot County, Missouri, a fascinating, comprehensive catalog of 138 identified classical style headpots and an invaluable resource for understanding the meaning of these remarkable ceramic vessels.
The Society of Friends and Black Education in Arkansas
In 1864 Alida and Calvin Clark, two abolitionist members of the Religious Society of Friends from Indiana, went on a mission trip to Helena, Arkansas. The Clarks had come to render temporary relief to displaced war orphans but instead found a lifelong calling. During their time in Arkansas, they started the school that became Southland College, which was the first institution of higher education for blacks west of the Mississippi, and they set up the first predominately black monthly meeting of the Religious Society of Friends in North America. Their progressive racial vision was continued by a succession of midwestern Quakers willing to endure the primitive conditions and social isolation of their work and to overcome the persistent challenges of economic adversity, social strife, and natural disaster. Southland’s survival through six difficult and sometimes dangerous decades reflects both the continuing missionary zeal of the Clarks and their successors as well as the dedication of the black Arkansans who sought dignity and hope at a time when these were rare commodities for African Americans in Arkansas.
The Lives of Clair Bee and Chip Hilton
Clair Bee (1896–1983) was a hugely successful basketball coach at Rider College and Long Island University with a 412 and 87 record before his career was derailed in 1951 by a point-shaving scandal. In the trial that sent his star player, Sherman White, to prison, the judge excoriated Bee for creating a morally lax culture that contributed to his players' involvement with gambling. To a certain extent, Bee agreed with the judge's scolding, concluding that coaches, himself included, had become so driven to succeedon the court that they had lost sight of the educational role sports should play. His coaching career effectively over, Bee launched an effort to reform the ills he saw in college sports, and he did so in the pages of the Chip Hilton novels for young readers. He began the series in 1948, but it was the post-scandal books that he used as teaching tools. The books mirrored some of the events of the gambling scandal and were Bee's attempt to reform the problems plaguing college sports. He used his fiction to posit a better sports world that he hoped his young readers would construct and inhabit. The Chip Hilton books were extremely popular and have become a classic series, with over two million copies sold to date. Hoop Crazy is the fascinating story of Clair Bee and his star character Chip Hilton and the ways in which their lives, real and fictional, were intertwined.
New and Selected Essays
From a maximum-security prison to a cancer ward, from a mental institution to the World Trade Center, Laurence Gonzales's prose grips from the first sentence. Sometimes hair-raising, sometimes heart-wrenching, among these essays is "Marion Prison," a National Magazine Award finalist, with its intimate view inside the most maximum security prison in America. "House of Pain" takes the reader into the life of a brain surgeon at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, a grim world that few ever see. "Rites of Spring," another National Magazine Award finalist, follows Gonzales and his then wife on their journey through cancer, not once, but twice. Other stories venture above the Arctic Circle, fly deep into the Alaskan wilderness among grizzly bears and trumpeter swans, explore aerobatics in high-performance aircraft, and eulogize aspects of Memphis and Miami as American cities that mourn their fates in uniquely different ways.
Poems by Annette Spaulding-Convy
In Broken Latin explores in a series of deft, witty, sexy, and soulful poems the misunderstood, idealized, and marginalized life of a modern Roman Catholic nun. In these poems, set in the patriarchal institution of the convent, Annette Spaulding-Convy comments on the American woman’s struggle for spiritual identity in contemporary culture through the voice of an ex-nun now mother/wife creating a life for herself in the world, while searching for an ethical, spiritual meaning not dependent upon traditional religious dogma.
An Anthology of Contemporary Arab American Poetry
At no other time in American history has our imagination been so engrossed with the Arab experience. An indispensable and historic volume, Inclined to Speak gathers together poems, from the most important contemporary Arab American poets, that shape and alter our understanding of this experience. These poems also challenge us to reconsider what it means to be American. Impressive in its scope, this book provides readers with an astonishing array of poetic sensibilities, touching on every aspect of the human condition. Whether about culture, politics, loss, art, or language itself, the poems here engage these themes with originality, dignity, and an unyielding need not only to speak, but also to be heard. Here are thirty-nine poets offering up 160 poems. Included in the anthology are Naomi Shihab Nye, Samuel Hazo, D. H. Melhem, Lawrence Joseph, Khaled Mattawa, Mohja Khaf, Matthew Shenoda, Kazim Ali, Nuar Alsadir, Fady Joudah, and Lisa Suhair Majaj. Charara has written a lengthy introduction about the state of Arab American poetry in the country today and short biographies of the poets and provided an extensive list of further readings.
An Anthology of Contemporary South Asian American Poetry
The first anthology of its kind, Indivisible brings together forty-nine American poets who trace their roots to Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Featuring award-winning poets including Meena Alexander, Agha Shahid Ali, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, and Vijay Seshadri, here are poets who share a long history of grappling with a multiplicity of languages, cultures, and faiths. The poems gathered here take us from basketball courts to Bollywood, from the Grand Canyon to sugar plantations, and from Hindu-Muslim riots in India to anti-immigrant attacks on the streets of post–9/11 America. Showcasing a diversity of forms, from traditional ghazals and sestinas to free verse, experimental writing, and slam poetry, Indivisible presents 141 poems by authors who are rewriting the cultural and literary landscape of their time and their place. Includes biographies of each poet.