Back in 2012, Regular Rumination hosted a regular poetry event, Poetry: Read More/Blog More. The premise was simple–write about poetry once a month. I’m a semi-regular reader of poetry–one or two books a year–so I happily joined in, a couple of times. Below is a post I wrote for my old blog, Ready When You Are, C.B. about Robert Frost, who really is much better than you … Continue reading Poetry: Read More/Blog More — Robert Frost
I found a copy of The Selected Poems of Frank O’Hara at Westider Books in New York last week which I bought on David Bowie’s recommendation. Not personal recommendation but one given in a list of essential reading that I found shortly after he died. I bought Frank O’Hara’s book even though I didn’t like the other book I read from Mr. Bowie’s list. I don’t read … Continue reading Selected Poems of Frank O’Hara; Beginning a New York Find
Finding a book suitable for grades six, seven and eight is not easy. The difference between a seventh grader and an eighth grader is dramatic, but the difference between a sixth and an eighth grader is stunning. This year we did our first school wide read, Chew on This by Charles Wilson and Eric Schlosser, based on Mr. Schlosser’s best-selling book Fast Food Nation. Each subject area read several … Continue reading Looking for the Next School Wide Read
Sometimes, it’s just not fair. I picked up a copy of Prize Stories 1995 from The O. Henry Awards somewhere, I don’t recall, probably a library book sale, thinking it would be fun to add a random assortment of good stories to my tournament. O. Henry Award winners, I thought, they’re probably all good.” So far they are. I read two for this round: “The Women … Continue reading Tournament of Short Stories: Randall Jerrell’s Book of Stories vs. The O. Henry Awards 1995.
For years the books we’ve used in my 7th grade English class have been dominated by white men and S.E. Hinton. While S.E. Hinton is a woman, women do not figure heavily in her novel The Outsiders. Though we love all of the books we use, and it’s harder to get a loved book out of the hands of an English teacher than it is … Continue reading Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
Wendy Mass wrote one of my favorite YA novels, Every Soul a Star. For some reason, I had it in my head that she also wrote Criss Cross but it turns out that was Lynn Rae Perkins. So, with what I thought were two terrific books under her belt, I was willing to cut some slack with my review of Heaven Looks a Lot Like the Mall. Now after … Continue reading Heaven Looks a Lot Like the Mall by Wendy Mass
This is the first time I’ve tried to write a review of a poetry collection. Where do I begin? There is no plot to summarize. There are no characters but the poet’s voice. Howl is a poem most Americans have heard of but few have read. (Okay, this is probably true for most American poems.) It’s easy to see why it upset so many people, … Continue reading Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg