Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Go Fever: short fiction by Patrick Ryan

From Catapult

Understand, we were all feeling a little rattled. Some of us had been in charge of checking the range-safety systems on the rocket boosters. Some of us had been combing over the liquid oxygen and hydrogen lines on the external fuel tank. Some of us — guys like me — had been double- and triple-checking the 31,000 thermal-protection tiles that covered the outside of the orbiter. The people who inspected the body flaps and elevons, the people who maintained the aft control thrusters, even the people who inflated the tires and washed the cabin windows had been involved in the incident. You didn’t have to be the man who’d given the okay to launch on that cold Tuesday morning to feel responsible.

Image also via Catapult

Monday, January 25, 2016

J.K. Rowling on Katrina Pearson

Read more via Buzzfeed

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

HRC endorses Hillary Clinton

Read more at the Human Rights Campaign blog

Image via Wikipedia

Wendell Berry to receive lifetime achievement award

The National Book Critics Circle is awarding their Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award to Kentucky author Wendell Berry!

From the Lexington Herald-Leader

Berry will receive the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, given annually to “a person or institution — a writer, publisher, critic, or editor, among others — who has, over time, made significant contributions to book culture,” according to the National Book Critics Circle website. Previous recipients have included author Toni Morrison and the Library of America.

Berry, 81, is the author of eight novels, two short story collections, 28 volumes of poetry, and 31 volumes of nonfiction. An outspoken environmentalist, organic farmer and pacifist, he has written about and engaged in civil disobedience against industrial agribusiness, ecological destruction, and militarization, the awards announcement noted.

Another Kentucky author Ada Limon has also been nominated for her book of poetry "Bright Dead Things."

See a full list of nominations here: Critical Mass

The awards will be presented March 17 in New York.

Image via The Broad Collective

Friday, January 15, 2016

Eileen Myles For President: On the importance of poetry

Via The New York Times Magazine

Q: Many people would be surprised to hear that according to you, poetry is alive and well in America. Our national political conversation has recently seen some rather unpoetic lurches to the right. How do you make sense of that?

Myles: Poetry always, always, always is a key piece of democracy. It’s like the un-Trump: The poet is the charismatic loser. You’re the fool in Shakespeare; you’re the loose cannon. As things get worse, poetry gets better, because it becomes more necessary.

Myles' I Must Be Living Twice: new & selected poems, 1975-2014 was released last year.

Image via Broadly

Monday, January 11, 2016

David Bowie's Formative Reading List

Via Brain Pickings from a retrospective of Bowie's work at the Art Gallery of Ontario. The list is in chronological order. Here is the first ten.

  1. The Age of American Unreason by Susan Jacoby
  2. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
  3. The Coast of Utopia (trilogy) by Tom Stoppard
  4. Teenage: The Creation of Youth 1875-1945 by Jon Savage
  5. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
  6. The Trial of Henry Kissinger by Christopher Hitchens
  7. Mr. Wilson's Cabinet of Wonder by Lawrence Weschler
  8. A People's Tragedy: The Russian Revolution 1890-1924 by Orlando Figes
  9. The Insult by Rupert Thomson
  10. Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon

RIP, David Bowie