Guest Writers

Bright Dead Things: Poems

Bright Dead Things: Poems
$16.00
Finalist for the National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award
A Best Poetry Book of 2015: New York Times and Buzzfeed

Bright Dead Things examines the chaos that is life, the dangerous thrill of living in a world you know you have to leave one day, and the search to find something that is ultimately "disorderly, and marvelous, and ours."

A book of bravado and introspection, of 21st century feminist swagger and harrowing terror and loss, this fourth collection considers how we build our identities out of place and human contact--tracing in intimate detail the various ways the speaker's sense of self both shifts and perseveres as she moves from New York City to rural Kentucky, loses a dear parent, ages past the capriciousness of youth, and falls in love. Limón has often been a poet who wears her heart on her sleeve, but in these extraordinary poems that heart becomes a "huge beating genius machine" striving to embrace and understand the fullness of the present moment. "I am beautiful. I am full of love. I am dying," the poet writes. Building on the legacies of forebears such as Frank O'Hara, Sharon Olds, and Mark Doty, Limón's work is consistently generous and accessible--though every observed moment feels complexly thought, felt, and lived.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781571314710
Publication Date: 
2015-09-15
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Carrying: Poems

Carrying: Poems
$22.00
WINNER OF THE 2018 NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD
ALA NOTABLE BOOK OF 2018
FINALIST FOR THE 2019 PEN/JEAN STEIN BOOK AWARD

From National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist Ada Limón comes The Carrying--her most powerful collection yet.

Vulnerable, tender, acute, these are serious poems, brave poems, exploring with honesty the ambiguous moment between the rapture of youth and the grace of acceptance. A daughter tends to aging parents. A woman struggles with infertility--"What if, instead of carrying / a child, I am supposed to carry grief?"--and a body seized by pain and vertigo as well as ecstasy. A nation convulses: "Every song of this country / has an unsung third stanza, something brutal." And still Limón shows us, as ever, the persistence of hunger, love, and joy, the dizzying fullness of our too-short lives. "Fine then, / I'll take it," she writes. "I'll take it all."

In Bright Dead Things, Limón showed us a heart "giant with power, heavy with blood"--"the huge beating genius machine / that thinks, no, it knows, / it's going to come in first." In her follow-up collection, that heart is on full display--even as The Carrying continues further and deeper into the bloodstream, following the hard-won truth of what it means to live in an imperfect world.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781571315120
Publication Date: 
2018-08-14
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Now Go Home: Wilderness, Belonging, and the Crosscut Saw

Now Go Home: Wilderness, Belonging, and the Crosscut Saw
$15.16
$18.95
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$3.79
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How did a quintessential California girl end up earning her living in the Pacific Northwest with a crosscut saw? In Now Go Home, Spagna reflects on the journey that took her from a childhood in the suburbs of LA to a trail crew in Washington's North Cascades, where she falls in love with a place and, unexpectedly, with a woman.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780870710094
Publication Date: 
2004-04-01
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Potluck: Community on the Edge of Wilderness

Potluck: Community on the Edge of Wilderness
$15.16
$18.95
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$3.79
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In "Potluck, " Ana Maria Spagna explores the enduring human connection to place, journeying from Tijuana to a California beach to Utah's canyon country--and, always, back to the sparsely populated valley in the North Cascades she calls home.

"Potluck" homes in on the everyday gatherings that, over time, define a community: a makeshift wedding, an art gallery opening, a farewell potluck, a work party, a campfire, a political caucus, a funeral. "What connects us?" Spagna asks, and she reveals, again and again, the gift of community--easy and uneasy, deep and enduring and essential.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780870715914
Publication Date: 
2011-04-15
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Reclaimers

Reclaimers
$15.96
$19.95
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$3.99
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For most of the past century, Humbug Valley, a forest-hemmed meadow sacred to the Mountain Maidu tribe, was in the grip of a utility company. Washington's White Salmon River was saddled with a fish-obstructing, inefficient dam, and the Timbisha Shoshone Homeland was unacknowledged within the boundaries of Death Valley National Park.

Until people decided to reclaim them.

In Reclaimers, Ana Maria Spagna drives an aging Buick up and down the long strip of West Coast mountain ranges--the Panamints, the Sierras, the Cascades--and alongside rivers to meet the people, many of them wise women, who persevered for decades with little hope of success to make changes happen. In uncovering their heroic stories, Spagna seeks a way for herself, and for all of us, to take back and to make right in a time of unsettling ecological change.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780295742748
Publication Date: 
2017-07-03
0

Sharks in the Rivers

Sharks in the Rivers
$15.00
The speaker in this extraordinary collection finds herself multiply dislocated: from her childhood in California, from her family's roots in Mexico, from a dying parent, from her prior self. The world is always in motion -- both toward and away from us--and it is also full of risk: from sharks unexpectedly lurking beneath estuarial rivers to the dangers of New York City, where, as Limón reminds us, even rats find themselves trapped by the garbage cans they've crawled into. In such a world, how should one proceed? Throughout Sharks in the Rivers, Limón suggests that we must cleave to the world as it "keep[s] opening before us," for, if we pay attention, we can be one with its complex, ephemeral, and beautiful strangeness. Loss is perpetual, and each person's mouth "is the same / mouth as everyone's, all trying to say the same thing." For Limón, it's the saying--individual and collective -- that transforms each of us into "a wound overcome by wonder," that allows "the wind itself" to be our "own wild whisper."
ISBN/SKU: 
9781571314383
Publication Date: 
2010-10-01
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Author: 
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Test Ride on the Sunnyland Bus: A Daughter's Civil Rights Journey

Test Ride on the Sunnyland Bus: A Daughter's Civil Rights Journey
$15.96
$19.95
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Test Ride on the Sunnyland Bus chronicles the story of an American family against the backdrop of one of the civil rights movement's lesser-known stories. In January 1957, Joseph Spagna and five other young men waited to board a city bus called the Sunnyland in Tallahassee, Florida. Their plan was simple but dangerous: ride the bus together--three blacks and three whites--get arrested, and take their case to the U.S. Supreme Court. Fifty years later Ana Maria Spagna sets off on a journey to understand what happened and why. Spagna travels from her remote mountain home in the Pacific Northwest to contemporary Tallahassee, searching for the truth of the incident and her father's involvement. Her journey is complicated by the fact that her father never spoke of the Sunnyland experience and died unexpectedly when she was eleven. Seeking out the other bus riders, now in their seventies, Spagna tries to make sense of their conflicting stories. Her odyssey becomes further troubled by the sudden diagnosis of her mother's terminal cancer. Winner of the River Teeth Literary Nonfiction prize, Test Ride on the Sunnyland Bus deftly weaves cultural and personal history, memoir, and reportage in this fascinating look at a family and a nation's past.
ISBN/SKU: 
9780803217126
Publication Date: 
2010-04-01
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Uplake: Restless Essays of Coming and Going

Uplake: Restless Essays of Coming and Going
$15.16
$18.95
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For many years, Ana Maria Spagna has stayed put, mostly, in a small mountain valley at the head of a glacier-carved lake. You're so lucky to live there, people say. She is lucky. But she is also restless. In Uplake she takes road trips, flies to distant cities, fantasizes about other people's lives, and then returns home again to muse on rootedness, yearning, commitment, ambition, wonder, and love. These engaging, reflective essays celebrate the richness of it all: winter floods and summer fires, the roar of a chainsaw and a fiddle in the wilderness, long hikes and open-water swims, an injured bear, a lost wedding ring, and a tree in the middle of a river. Uplake reminds us to love what we have while encouraging us to still imagine what we want.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780295743226
Publication Date: 
2018-02-15
0