<!-- Laura Bock: Red Diaper Daughter -->

Red Diaper Daughter

By Laura Bock

“I grew up in the late 1940s and 50s in San Francisco, the daughter of socialists active in the labor movement, the granddaughter of Russian Jewish social revolutionaries. They were called “reds,” “commies” and “subversives.” I am a Red Diaper Baby, proud that my heritage is one of resistance and defiance. It has been my job to follow in their footsteps…and for me the burning question is, did I do them proud by representing yet another radical activist generation, putting body and principles on the line.”

Now in her early 70’s, the author looks back on her life: Her family, the choices she made and the paths she took–with the last 60 years as a backdrop. She tells her very personal stories of the legacy she received, the impact of McCarthyism on her childhood, coming of age in the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960’s, and how she found her voice in the second wave of the women’s liberation movement of the mid-1970s.

She describes her transformation from a self-hating and hiding fat child into a proud fat woman who joined the fat liberation and size acceptance movements and performed for 18 years with a feminist theater collective she helped to found. She writes of losing her eyesight and later her hearing and of the challenges and joys of becoming old, while remaining an activist.

This is a vividly written, revealing and at times funny memoir.

To order, CLICK HERE.

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The Moon Is Almost Full

By Chana Bloch

“Under siege, I am still a kingdom,” writes Chana Bloch in this signal, singing, singeing collection of poems. Each page verifies the beauty and scope and surge of a life both extraordinary and daily, embraced not in spite of our mortality, but because of it.

—Jane Hirshfield, The Beauty

 

Chana Bloch insists on life. Inviting us to the view from mortality’s edge, taking us to “the intersection of self and door,” she can experience “a joy so acute it startles me” even in the cancer ward. For all of us who have “looked down a well so deep / you couldn’t see bottom,” she teaches us to look around:
 
A sparrow lands on a springy stalk,
rides it fluently to the ground.
The deer come up close and present their ears.

—Alicia Ostriker, Waiting for the Light

 

These poems, fashioned with compact power and formal elegance, are a luminous demonstration of how poetry can be the vehicle for both confronting our darkest fears and yet continuing to affirm the preciousness of life. The Moon Is Almost Full is the crowning achievement of Chana Bloch’s distinguished career as a poet.

—Robert Alter, The Book of Psalms: A New Translation and Commentary

 

To order, CLICK HERE.

<!-- Nan Fink Gefen and Sandra Butler: It Never Ends -->

It Never Ends

Mothering Middle-Aged Daughters

By Sandra Butler and Nan Fink Gefen

It Never Ends: Mothering Middle-Aged Daughters explores the complex challenges and unexpected rewards of aging mothers in their relationships with their midlife daughters. Based on interviews with women between 65 and 85, it illuminates issues of closeness, distance, longing, and need that arise. Mothers speak openly about the ongoing effects of the past on the present, the cultural, familial, and interpersonal conflicts that remain, and the varied and often invisible ways they continue mothering.

A rich, thoughtful, multi-layered look into the ways that mothers experience their relationships variously with love, joy, fulfillment, sorrow, anguish and longing…

—Paula J. Caplan, Don’t Blame Mother: Mending the Mother-Daughter Relationship

 
A brave book, and one that will help many aging mothers feel less alone…

—Ellen Bass, Like a Beggar, coauthor of The Courage To Heal

 

To order, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about Sandra Butler, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about Nan Fink Gefen, CLICK HERE.

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The Butterfly Hours

Transforming Memories Into Memoir

By Patty Dann

The Butterfly Hours

Patty Dann is the author of three novels: Starfish, Mermaids, and Sweet & Crazy. She has also published two memoirs, The Goldfish Went on Vacation: A Memoir of Loss (and Learning to Tell the Truth about It) and The Baby Boat: A Memoir of Adoption. Her work has been translated into French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese. Mermaids was made into a movie starring Cher, Winona Ryder, and Christina Ricci.

Her articles have appeared in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, Philadelphia Inquirer, Christian Science Monitor, O, the Oprah Magazine, the Oregon Quarterly; Redbook, More, ForbesWoman; Poets & Writers Magazine, Writer’s Handbook, Dirt: Quirks, Habits; and Passions of Keeping House, and This I Believe: On Motherhood.

To order, CLICK HERE.

For more information, CLICK HERE.

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Discovering Senior Space

By Suzanne Juhasz

After a distinguished career as professor of English and women’s studies, Suzanne Juhasz decided to retire. She saw retirement as a time to revive old interests and discover new ones. She started writing personal narrative, appeared in plays, took singing lessons, and continued her lifelong ballet classes.

She expected this new phase to be exciting and satisfying. What she didn’t anticipate was the uncertainty and anxiety that came with redefining herself in this in-between stage: past middle age but not quite elderly—what she has termed “senior space.” She found herself on a journey of self-reflection, looking back on her family—her identities as daughter, granddaughter, mother, and grandmother, on her romantic relationships, and on her thirty-year career to help her understand her present.

In this memoir, Juhasz offers an engaging view into the intimate details of her life: marrying young, having children, becoming a feminist, experiencing divorce, being one of the first generation of women’s studies scholars. By sharing her story, she shows that as women mature, they are not cutting the threads of their lives but weaving them into new patterns.

To order, CLICK HERE.

<!-- Virginia Moffat Khuri: Hiroshima, Remembering 1945 & 1958-->

Hiroshima, Remembering 1945 & 1958

By Virginia Moffat Khuri

The book tells two parallel stories. The first, on the morning of August 6, 1945 the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. The second, on the morning of August 6, 1958 an American teenager spoke from the Children’s Memorial in the Peace Park to the people of Hiroshima and the youth of Japan – and the world. These two ‘stories’ mirror each other on opposite pages: one words of survivors, witnesses in 1945; the other an image from 1958. The first story is one of horror; the second, one of hope for peace on earth.

The images are from transparencies that were made by an exchange student to Hiroshima in 1958, a 16-year-old with no photographic experience using a borrowed 35mm camera lacking a light meter, auto-focus and film that had to be loaded into cartridges before leaving home. They were badly stored in an attic for 50 years and were so damaged that they were almost thrown away. But the light leaks and emulsion cracks might be reminiscent of the atomic bombing thirteen years earlier and the dust could also be seen as the Black Rain that caused radiation sickness. Even the mundane street scenes caught on a bright sunny morning in 1958 mirror August 6, 1945.

To order, CLICK HERE.

<i>The Widows’ Handbook</i>

TheWidowsHandbookThe Widows’ Handbook:
Poetic Reflections on Grief and Survival

Edited by Jacqueline Lapidus and Lise Menn
Foreword by Ruth Bader Ginsburg

The Widows’ Handbook is the first anthology of poems by contemporary widows. This stirring collection celebrates the strategies widows learn and the resources they muster to deal with people, living space, possessions, social life, and especially themselves, once shock has turned to the realization that nothing will ever be the same. As Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says in her Foreword, losing one’s partner is “a loss like no other.”

The Widows’ Handbook includes the work of 87 American women of all ages, legally married or not, straight and gay, whose partners or spouses have died. Some are already published widely—including more than a dozen prizewinners, five Pushcart nominees, and two regional poets laureate. Others are not as well known, and some appear in print for the first time here. Anyone who has lost a loved one or is involved in helping the bereaved will be able to relate to their experiences. But, while both men and women understand the bewilderment, solitude, and change of status thrust upon the widowed, women suffer a particular social demotion and isolation shown here in all its variations. With courage and wry humor, these women—including the editors—write frankly about being paralyzed and about going forward. Their poems are honest, beautiful, and accessible.

When a partner dies, we begin a long journey down a path we’d rather not take, and we may imagine that life could never be bearable again. The poems in this Handbook offer much more than guidance or comfort. Their searing honesty and vivid depictions of resilience offer us invaluable reassurance that our grieving, however painful, will not destroy our capacity to live with meaning–and even joy.

–Judy Norsigian, Executive Director, Our Bodies, Ourselves

I wish this collection had been available when I was a new widow. What a spectacular group of women this is! Their reactions and experiences as widows are varied, but each woman brings her own special intelligence to mourning, managing alone, and making a new life. Poetry makes those experiences immediately, emotionally accessible.

–Jacqueline M.S. Winterkorn, M.D., Ph.D., Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology in Neurology and Neuroscience, Weill Cornell Medical College

To order, ,CLICK HERE. Also available at BarnesandNoble.com.

For additional information, CLICK HERE.

 

 

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The Wilderness
New and Selected Poems

By Maurya Simon

Maurya Simon’s new volume, The Wilderness, spans over thirty years of her poetry writing life, and it explores the most vital aspects of our lives: the power of language, the mysteries of the natural world, and how we may endure and transcend the losses that besiege us as we live fully in the world.

Maurya Simon’s language is lush, dense, sensual, and framed by a dazzling intellect. In this her New and Selected Poems we come to see the full power of her symphonic sweep and the sheer dynamism of her compositional slant–riffs, play, improvisation, harmonic resonance–-yet the resolve is always there, always a breathless moment. The opening poem has all the profundity of Rumi and the softness of Pablo Neruda. She explores themes of home, habitation, wildness, God, the scriptural erasure of women’s bodies and her subversive reinstatements, a robust love of the word and its various embodiments, and always more, always more. This is her own book of questions, her own gospel. Maurya Simon’s oeuvre is a deliberate world of grace, awe, beauty, delight and wonder. In these poems you will find rest, comfort, deep questions, some discomfort, but always joy. Read this book –you will be grateful for it.

–Chris Abani, Sanctificum & Hands Washing Water

The Wilderness … makes clear what readers of hers over the years have increasingly come to feel, that Maurya Simon’s is one of the strongest, most humane, imaginative, compassionate and flat-out brilliant voices of her generation. The sensual immediacy of her vision, her explorations of non-western traditions, and the ease with which she moves between present-day America and other cultural milieus and historical periods—all of this is dazzling. I don’t think she is capable of writing a bad line. Readers of poetry who may have been unfamiliar with Simon’s work up till now should sit up and take notice.

–Richard Tillinghast, Wayfaring Strangers

To order, CLICK HERE.

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The Tremble of Love
A Novel of the Baal Shem Tov

By Ani Tuzman

A novel inspired by the legendary spiritual master, Rabbi Yisroel ben Eliezar, known as the Baal Shem Tov, the Good Master of the Name, who beckoned forth love from the hearts of rag pickers, ruby merchants, midwives, and murderers. 

Poor orphan.  Simpleton.   Harder to tame than the wind.  He hears what they call him.  But he listens to the presence his father promised would never leave him.

Yisroel finds his way to those who nurture his healing gifts and rare compassion—-until he embraces a destiny he cannot yet fathom nor deny any longer.

Honoring women, children, and the poor as his teachers.  Celebrating life’s simplest deeds as worship.  Praying with joyous abandon.  Loving without condition.  Yisroel’s “irreverent” practices threaten the established authorities, among them an embittered rabbinic leader with a mission of his own: to destroy the irrepressible master known as the Baal Shem Tov and his growing community of followers.

Set in the richly textured Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth of the 1700s, this exquisite reimagining of one of history’s most revered and revolutionary mystics transports readers back in time to experience the true meaning of power and the timeless grace of love.

To order, CLICK HERE.

To learn more, CLICK HERE.

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