The Pugilist's Wife tells the story of Magdalene Tucker, a jilted woman who takes in a drifter during one of Sun, Louisiana's worst recorded droughts. When the townspeople find out about this, they decide to lead a sort of crusade to Magdalene's farm in order to put an end to Magdalene's and this man's sins, thinking them the sole cause of the town's plight. But no one can predict that this convergence upon Magdalene's land will turn violent, resulting in a brutal and bloody climax, where chance and coincidence take a back seat to love, honor, revenge, and pride.
David Armand teaches at Southeastern Louisiana University, where he also serves as Managing Editor for Louisiana Literature. David has written a collection of short stories, Mae's Blues, and he is currently at work on his second novel, Harlow. David lives in Hammond with his wife, Lucy, their daughter, Lily, and their son, Levi.
Small-town Florida, 1976. Life is squeaky-clean. Nothing ever happens here and if it does, the only response is a polite smile. Sensible Abby Newman is best friends with free-spirit Dana Massey. Seventeen and restless, they set out to defy the town motto: Hear, Speak, See No Evil. They smoke, drink, push the boundaries of sexual exploration, and break into neighborhood houses. When Dana steals an expensive object, their innocent prank turns into a crime. Soon the theft comes to light, along with other secrets, and the strength of their friendship is challenged. In the land explorer Ponce de Leon named Pascua Florida—Feast of Flowers—Abby learns about loyalty, betrayal, and the power of forgiveness.
Tina Egnoski was born in Melbourne, Florida. She attended the University of Florida and Emerson College, where she earned her MFA in 1997. She is the author of Perishables, winner of the Black River Chapbook Competition and published in 2010 by Black Lawrence Press. Her work, both fiction and poetry, has appeared in a number of literary journals, including The Carolina Quarterly, Cimarron Review and Folio. She currently lives in Barrington, Rhode Island, with her husband and son.
The poems in this collection inhabit an intimate landscape of basement bathrooms and neighborhood pools, places where the familiar becomes strange: a house burns on an empty highway; Jesus has his portrait made by a hobbyist painter in a linoleum-tiled room. These poems search out the unseen that exists behind the known, not to erase it by naming it, but to grapple with its presence and power, its effect on all that we can know and see.
Ingrid Browning Moody's poems have appeared in Crab Orchard Review, New South, RHINO, and elsewhere. She teaches composition at the University of California and crafts artisan jewelry in her Santa Cruz studio.
Parsons' third collection of poems, as in his previous books, carries the reader too many geographies, both physical and cerebral. The poems, perhaps his most eclectic and revealing, return to Austin, Texas, in the turbulent and carnal sixties, the sublime Hill Country streams, north to Montana's Mystic Lake and hallowed Indian battle grounds, and with the deftness of a wise and worldly guide, you will travel the tender valves of the heart, where all creativity finds its passion, to the very quay, that zone between reality and the possible, what Garcia Lorca called duende.
David M. Parsons, 2011 Texas State Poet Laureate, grew up in Austin, Texas and after serving in the United States Marine Corps, he attended The University of Texas and Texas State University. After several years in business, advertising, and coaching at Bellaire High School, he received an M.A. in Creative Writing & Literature from the University of Houston. His first collection of poems, Editing Sky, was the winner of the 1999 Texas Review Poetry Prize and the Violet Crown Book Awards Special Citation. Parsons' second book, Color of Mourning, followed in 2007. Parsons teaches Creative Writing and Kinesiology at Lone Star College.
The poems in the first part of this book are set in and/or inspired by my walking safari in the South Luangwa Valley of Zambia in the summer of 2010. Some of the poems are whimsical responses to the guidebook, others taking serious the Mississippi-Africa axis in race relations. The title poem is a long meditation on that axis. Two poems are set in Lusaka, the capital city of Zambia, where friends took us to an AIDS compound (read: Ghetto) and another to an AIDS hospital. The "other poems" are poems I wrote many years ago and others that I started but recently finished; others are new poems, mostly set in and around my life in Mississippi.—Noel Polk
Noel Polk is Emeritus Professor of English at Mississippi State University and editor of the Mississippi Quarterly. He is best known for his editorial and critical work on William Faulkner and his critical work on Eudora Welty. He has lectured widely on both in this country and across Europe, in Japan, Australia, and South America. He is he editor of the Corrected Texts of Faulkner's novels for The Library of America and the author of, among others, Children of the Dark House, Eudora Welty: A Bibliography of Her Work, Outside the Southern Myth, and Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition.
Coping with Transition: Men, Motherhood, Money and Magic
Houstonians from business, law, consulting, art, and journalism share their transitions through challenges in various stages of life. They have coped with parental neglect, failure to marry "on schedule," conflicts between career and family, turf wars in competitive careers, retirement anxiety, and grievous losses. Magic is found in a teenage duckling's transformation to swan, a stray thought that leads to international adoption, a rekindled romance, the power of a well-chosen wardrobe, and the humor of a "menopausal magnolia." The writers belong to the Houston chapter of The Transition Network, a national organization for women "50 and forward."
Susan Brigg Wright's career has evolved through TV journalism, public relations, and corporate communications, to focus on memoir: writing, editing, producing videos, and leading workshops. In earlier years she covered consumer affairs for Houston's NBC affiliate, then became a producer-anchor with Houston Public Television. She wrote monthly columns for the Houston Business Journal and taught journalism at the University of Houston.
"As a territory, and later a state, Louisiana has survived French rule, Spanish rule, Rebel rule, and even Republican rule. And somehow the people and place have managed to retain their culture and character. Whether it's been the Natural State, the Dream State, or the Sportsman's Paradise, Louisiana has always been a state of resiliency, community, and joie de vivre. Poem by poem, the pages of The Southern Anthology, Volume IV: Louisiana demonstrate the variety and resiliency of a state that's overcome wars, hurricanes, and floods to make more of itself every time. The lines between these covers are as beautiful and diverse as the people of Louisiana, as rich as the state's history, and as promising as the future we're all working towards."—Jack B. Bedell, author of Come Rain, Come Shine and Call and Response
"The Death of Bonnie and Clyde" and Other Stories follows the trail of its wayward characters down the Delta back roads, crossing paths with Hernando DeSoto--hands bloodied by the indian slaughters--hitchhikers and thieves, UFO's, concrete finishers, naked fishermen, a lusty cheer squad caught and confessing in the midst of a killer tornado, and trash telescope salesmen on the day after Christmas–all saintly guardians of the human heart. From the Florida Coast up through the Carolinas and over to Arkansas' Ozarks, Bonnie and Clyde blazes a trail of love and deceit, hard liquor and the revelation of what it's like tp be free and wild and in love on this earth.
Michael Gills grew up in Arkansas. His first collection of stories, Why I Lie, was chosen as a top literary debut of 2002, and was a finalist for Arkansas' Porter Prize. His first novel, Go Love, is forthcoming from Raw Dog Screaming Press. Gills is currently Associate Professor/Lecturer of Writing at the University of Utah.
Six couples from Austin, Texas, have vacationed on Lake Como in Italy during the month of August for the last seven years. This year they learn that during this month for the last seven years little girls have gone missing around the lake. One of them, Harry, the photographer, suspects that one of their group is the killer. His accusations eventually alienate him from the group—and even his wife. When they all return to Texas he continues his investigations until he discovers the identity of the killer and faces him in the violent climax. A mystery with a set of vivid characterizations, Black August explores Americans abroad, the question of evil, and the story of a marriage in crisis.
William Harrison is the author of nine novels, three collections of short stories, two major screen plays, essays and travels pieces. He is the co-founder of the writing program at the University of Arkansas and still lives in Fayetteville.
"I admire the assurance, the formal authority of Graves' craft."—Robert Morgan
"Here is a welcome new voice offering strengths in craftsmanship and music, but always grounded in a profound sense of place. Read these poems for their wisdom, listen closely to their cadence, let them take you where they will."—Jeff Daniel Marion
"Tennessee Landscape with Blighted Pine is more than an extraordinary first book. These poems have the music, wisdom, and singular voice of a talent fully realized, and make abundantly clear that Jesse Graves is one of America's finest young poets."—Ron Rash
Jesse Graves was born and raised in Sharps Chapel, Tennessee, where his ancestors settled in the 1780s. His poems and essays have appeared in Prairie Schooner, Southern Quarterly, Connecticut Review, and other journals, anthologies, and collections. He teaches at East Tennessee State University, where he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Literature and Language.
Bledsoe is an extended narrative poem that centers on a mute Appalachian man named Durant Bledsoe. Specifically, the poem takes place in the mountains of Yancey County, North Carolina, in an early part of the 20th century. Durant Bledsoe's mother is dying with a brain tumor and he must take care of her, all the while coming to terms with the fact that she, in her suffering, has asked him to take her life. The book focuses much on landscape and on Bledsoe's complex psychology and perceptions of the world, specifically as they apply to culture, family, religion, and identity.
"Rarely has a contemporary poetic voice achieved the incantatory with such skill, echoes of Cormac McCarthy's word-hoard pulsing throughout!"—Kathryn Stripling Byer
"Sometimes a prayer, sometimes a scream, sometimes a folksong, the poem is a narrative of care giving, devotion, violence, and love. You will not soon forget it."—Robert Morgan
William Wright is author of three other collections of poems: Dark Orchard (Texas Review Press, 2005), The Ghost Narratives (Finishing Line Press, 2008), and Sleep Paralysis (Winner of the South Carolina Poetry Initiative Prize, forthcoming from Stepping Stones Press, 2011). Recent work of Wright's appears in Shenandoah, North American Review, Indiana Review, Colorado Review, and Southern Poetry Review. Wright is the series editor of The Southern Poetry Anthology.
Purple Church tells the story of Brother Jimmy Russell, a vulnerable and lonely Baptist minister who has everything going for him until his life falls apart after leukemia claims the life of his devoted bride. Brother Jimmy is then tempted by the young and beautiful Ashley White, who was abused by her father as a child and then raped by her fiance's father when she was in college. Ashley's tragic past leaves her empty and starved for attention, a perfect combination that leads her to skid row on a lofted stage in a popular Memphis strip club. The tale is one of redemption and spiritual consequence for both the handsome preacher and the lovely coed, whose salvation is Brother Jimmy's only reason for living.
Starner Jones, an emergency medicine physician living in Memphis, was born and raised in northeast Mississippi and educated at the University of the South, Saint George's University School of Medicine, and the University of Mississippi Medical Center. A seventh-generation Mississippian, Jones enjoys world travel, hunting, fishing, and golf. Purple Church is his debut novel.
Never Surrender--Never Retreat: A Novel of Medical Politics in Texas
Bill Morgan had everything—or at least he did until, as chair of the board of Travis College of Medicine, he severed a seventy-year relationship between the College and its principle teaching hospital and touched off a blood feud between them. He and Dean Dan Maffit provoke a struggle with the hospital's board chair, Jimmie Rutherford, and its CEO and ex-Israeli operative, Sandy Wechsler, in which the two institutions vie for prestige and dominance and for the physicians who serve them. We follow Morgan's fate in the ensuing conflict as his ambitions bring him face to face with his inner demons and insecurities. In the wake of the turmoil the lives of physicians, administrators and board members spin out of control. This novel of medical politics asks us to consider how not-for-profit institutions make decisions and how these decisions unmoor people's lives in unpredictable ways and run the risk of violating the public trust.
Michael Lieberman is a research physician and poet who lives in Houston with his wife Susan. He has published five collections of poems and is a winner of the PEN-Texas Award for Fiction. Never Surrender--Never Retreat is his first novel.
Resurrecting Trash: Dan Phillips and the Phoenix Commotion
The Phoenix Commotion is a local building initiative created to prove that constructing homes with recycled and salvaged materials has a viable place in the building industry. This process uses only apprentice labor and teaches marketable skills to anyone with a work ethic who is willing to swing a hammer. By keeping labor costs low and using donated or found materials, the homes created are truly affordable. (www.phoenixcommotion.com)
This book is an examination of the history of Phoenix Commotion and the philosophy of Dan Phillips, the prime mover of the enterprise. Here readers will be introduced to the major projects of Phillips and Phoenix Commotion: the story behind them and the specifics of these unique structures, complete with black-and-white and color plates.
The editors of this book--Donald R. Bates, Amanda Dellett, Christina Fernandez, Jake Gebhardt, Doug Haines, Anna R. Jennings, Dustin Levien, Lauren McAuliffe, Margaret Miller Sellers--were all members of Paul Ruffin's 2011 Editing/Publishing Practicum. They researched, designed, and wrote all the copy for this book.
Because of her dark-haired beauty, Delphine Roberts became a reluctant success, first as a model, then as an actress. Her work with a great French director brought her international movie stardom. A film with a famous Italian director gave her a daughter. However, none of this satisfied her. Searching for something else in her life, she and her little girl explored the world together, traveling from London to Vietnam, from Paris to Istanbul, and beyond. Fascinated by the Middle East, she explored and lived in many parts of that ancient world, including Palestine. Deeply affected when she sees the massive wall severing Palestinian lands from Israeli territory, Delphine is determined to learn the facts and see first-hand the hardships faced by ordinary Palestinian citizens. Eventually, she raises the money to produce and star in a movie about the Palestinian territories. Although working conditions are brutal, she is determined to finish the movie, even if it's the last she ever makes.
Bruce Douglas Reeves has published three novels—The Night Action, Man on Fire, and Street Smarts--and his short fiction has appeared in dozens of magazines and literary journals. He lives with his wife, Sherrill, in Berkeley, California.
"I taught undergraduates for forty-five years (the last thirty at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee), and for most of those years I spent as much time as possible outside. I hunted as much as I could, and I fished some. I also spent time in the woods of Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi just walking around looking at things that caught my eye and trying to understand. Outdoor life and academic life for me have been intimately connected, and this collection of essays explores that connection. The essays in Wedding the Wild Particular make plain the sheer delight I have taken in the primary world and the degree to which that delight has enriched my academic vocation. They make what I believe is a coherent argument for the importance of natural literacy in the intellectual life." --Robert Benson
Robert Benson taught undergraduates for forty-five years and recently retired from the University of the South. He divides his time between Sewanee and the Alabama Gulf Coast.
We Are the Bus travels the world in 42 poems—from Hat Island in Puget Sound to Oaxaca's zocalo to the steps of St. Peter's Basilica. In language simple, precise, and musical, the poems revisit the complexities of growing up and moving on. We Are the Bus tells stories full of people—telescope makers and fisherman, neighbors, travelers and family, high divers and tired pilgrims, Norwegian horseshoe players and American mothers-in-law. Vivid details and surprising events give authority to the language as each poem moves from memory and observation toward clarity and song.
James McKean, born in Seattle, completed an M.F.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Iowa. His publications include two books of poems, Headlong and Tree of Heaven, and a book of essays: Home Stand Growing up In Sports. McKean now teaches for the Queens University Low Residency M.F.A. program in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The poems in Isn't It Romantic? are set primarily in and around the Connecticut River Valley of central Connecticut, where the speaker wanders, trying to do his best Wordsworth impression without much success. He sees redemption in Franciscan acts of kindness (even as he does violence out of ignorance, by accident, or in the name of practicality), considers how people come to or are driven to certain crossroads, wonders what is waiting on the other side of this existence, and supposes that the individual, if not humanity collectively, still has a chance to take it easy on the earth.
John Popielaski was born in Port Jefferson Station, New York, and attended the State University of New York at Stony Brook and American University. He is the author of A Brief Eureka for the Alchemists of Peace (Antrim House) and O, Captain, which won the 2006 Ledge Press Poetry Chapbook Award. He lives in Portland, Connecticut, and spends time at his camp in Maine.]
This ground-breaking, mixed genre memoir journeys from the soil of Texas farmland near Floresville to the shrimpers' nets of the Gulf Coast, near Matagorda. Three generations of Hispanic families are viewed through the faith-filled lens of the miraculous and the poignancy of dreams never realized. The journey continues to mid-twentieth century Houston, where what is done is as powerful as that which never happened.
Sarah Cortez is the author of How to Undress a Cop. She has edited Windows into My World: Latino Youth Write Their Lives (2007); Hit List:The Best of Latino Mystery (2009); Indian Country Noir (2010); and You Don't Have a Clue: Latino Mystery Stories for Teens (2011). She lives and works in Houston, Texas.
Susan Palwick, novelist and Associate Professor of English at the University of Nevada, Reno, volunteers four hours a week as a lay chaplain in the emergency room of a local hospital. In The Emergency Department Sonnets, a single volunteer shift unfolds in forty-five sonnets, short poems allowing us to hear the many voices--the patients', the staff's, the chaplain's--of the ER. These stories, snippets of much larger ones, capture both the chaos and the beauty of the dramas unfolding every day in every hospital, where the human search for meaning is driven by stark reminders of mortality.
Susan Palwick is Associate Professor of English at the University of Nevada, Reno, and Clinical Associate Professor of Medical Education at the University of Nevada School of Medicine, where she teaches Narrative Medicine. She has published three novels and a short-story collection. She is a Licensed Lay Preacher in the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada.