Laurie Blauner reads Guide for the Perplexed

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Laurie Blauner is the author of three novels, The Bohemians (2013), Infinite Kindness (2007), and Somebody (2002), and six books of poetry.  Her most recent chapbook of poetry was published by dancing girl press.  A novella called Instructions for Living was published in 2011 by Main Street Rag.  She has received a National Endowment of the Arts Fellowship as well as Seattle Arts Commission, King County Arts Commission, 4Culture, and Artist Trust grants and awards.  She was a resident at Centrum in Washington state and was in the Jack Straw Writers Program in 2007.  Her work has appeared in The New Republic, The NationThe Georgia Review, American Poetry Review, Mississippi Review, and many other magazines.  A new book of poetry is forthcoming from What Books Press.  Her web site is www.laurieblauner.com.

S.D. Lishan reads Dreaming The Colony

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S.D. Lishan is an Associate Professor of English at The Ohio State University, where he teaches courses in creative writing and poetry. His poems, fiction, and creative nonfiction have appeared in Bellingham Review, Barrow Street, Creative Nonfiction, Brevity, Chicago Review, Kenyon Review, The American Poetry Journal, In Posse Review, Mudlark, Arts & Letters, New England Review, Versedaily, and other journals. His book Body Tapestries, a winner of the Orphic Prize, was published by Dream Horse Press. He lives in Delaware, Ohio, with his wife, Lynda.

Review: Songs of Willow Frost by Jamie Ford

By Caitlin Callaghan

SongsofwillowfrostEarly on in Jamie Ford’s new novel, Songs of Willow Frost, William Eng, the twelve year-old protagonist, is about to run away from Seattle’s Sacred Heart Orphanage with his best friend, Charlotte. As they are on the verge of making their escape, Charlotte reminds William that one of the nuns who cared for them used to say that all great stories have a moral.  William, considering this, “didn’t know if his story had a moral to it. Honestly, he didn’t care […] All he wished for was a happy ending.”  Read More

Review: Russell Atkins: On the Life & Work of an American Master

By Patrick James Dunagan

atkinsBoth prolific and diverse, Russell Atkins’ literary output crosses over traditional divisions of genre, style, and form. He has drafted musical scores for many of his literary works and theorized his original theory of practice in his essay “A Psychovisual Perspective for ‘Musical’ Composition.” His spelling, syntax, and subject matter all tend to be unorthodox. The one problem with this selection of work is that it leaves you feeling there should be more included. Let’s have a full Collected Poems rather than this slim gathering. Of course, that is the point. The format of the Unsung Masters Series calls for the selection of the writer’s work to be followed by inclusion of recent critical essays by scholars. Responding here to Atkins are Aldon Lynn Nielsen, Tom Orange, Evie Shockley, Sean Singer, and Tyrone Williams. The essays not only provide context for approaching Atkins’ work, but also demonstrate the ongoing relevance located within it.  The hope, at least in part, is to generate a broader interest in Atkins among poets, scholars, and general readers. Read More