Sunday, March 08, 2009


Cherrie Moraga on Obama; and some more reading

Found this: from last November, an excellent commentary by writer CherrĂ­e Moraga, in her website, on the election of Barack Obama and the continuing unfinished struggles for peace and justice

Moraga's commentary is here. The main page of her website is here.


A couple of items I spotted at the AWP bookfair, and have gotten my hands on since then (at the bookfair the publisher had just sample display copies):

Arrows in the Gale and Other Poems by Arturo Giovannitti, published 2004 by Quale Press. Giovannitti, who lived from 1884 to 1959, was active in the Industrial Workers of the World, and remained involved in literature and radical political work throughout his life. According to the brief Afterword by Gian Lombardo, the book gathers together the collected poems Giovannitti wrote in English.

Light in Hand: Selected Early Poems by Lola Ridge, edited by Daniel Tobin, published 2007 also by Quale Press. Ridge (1873-1941) was born in Ireland, came to the United States in the early 20th century. She was an editor with the literary magazines Others and Broom, and was involved with labor organizing. Light in Hand includes poems from her collections The Ghetto and Other Poems, Sun-Up and Other Poems, and Red Flag.


And, two others that came in the mail recently from Red Dragonfly Press:

Transparencies by Robert Edwards, just out early this year, a collection of great power and lyricism, poems of somber pain and rowdy beauty, by a fine poet who is also the editor and publisher of the online poetry magazine Pemmican.

The Extended Words: An Imaginary Dictionary by Sid Gershgoren, also just out. This one has to be seen to be believed. Not only has Gershgoren compiled a full-size dictionary of made-up words, with full (and sometimes multiple) definitions; he also includes, with each entry, a made-up quotation, from a made-up literary or scholarly work, by a fictitious author or authors, citing the made-up word; and, in an appendix at the end of the book, he includes made-up biographical notes, sometimes quite lengthy, for many of the made-up authors ("Helen Wrinkle Pause;" "Dooubt Fogbottom;" etc.) of the made-up cited quotations. Whimsical would be putting it mildly. Browsing through entries I shake my head in marvel and disbelief, even as I can't put it down.

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