Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Reading & Walking

Now that spring is here, Piper and I are at the beach at least one or two afternoons a week, savoring our walking days before dogs are banned and the sunbathers are afoot.

The days are beautiful.

More good news: my students are incredible this semester, and are currently making their final chapbook and compiling their portfolios. We took a group photo for the chapbook this afternoon; I'll have to ask them if I can post it here. It's been so much fun to talk fiction with them all semester, and to hear what they think about the stories they've read and workshopped, as well as (in the process) everything from bengal tigers to tutoring middle school students. They're a brilliant bunch, heading for good things.

Reading gems!:
Barrie Jean Borich's Body Geographic. Palimpsests of body and land, inscribing and mapping a life.

This is one of the maps from the book, copied from Barrie Jean Borich's website:

A friend recommended Rebecca Skloot's The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, and I am engrossed. It's my before-bed and when-I-wake-up reading. I'm astounded by the research that went into its writing, and the replication of conversations with Lacks' family, and the layers of information about cell research, race and science, and treatment of cancer over time. So many missteps and injustices, and so much has changed (seemingly) in our knowledge of disease and patient rights.

(I also love that Skloot says, in this video, that she first learned of Henrietta Lacks when she was just sixteen, and how that story stuck with her into adulthood. I need to show my students this clip.)

And what's life without a novel (or three) and some poetry?

Currently devouring Laird Hunt's Kind One, Valerie Vogrin's Shebang, and recently finished Amity Gaige's incredible Schroder (how did she make a liar so sympathetic? this is what I need to learn), and John Yau's poetry (cheering for his art-and-language play).

Full of calamari from the farmer's market, now, it's time to read in bed.