Welcome from Amy D. Unsworth

Language, Literature, Learning & Life.

From the Publisher's Desk

Not What I Expected: The Road from Womanhood to Motherhood,

ed. by Donya Currie and Hildie S. Block ISBN 0-931181-26-7 Due Fall 2006

An anthology of poetry, fiction, essays and artwork by Jody Bolz, Carole Burns, Grace Cavalieri, Christina Daub, Mary Doroshenk, Patricia Gray, Clarinda Harriss, Anne Hasselbrack, Jacqueline Jules, Mary Ann Larkin, Lyn Lifshin, Hilary Tham, Donna Vitucci, Mary-Sherman Willis, and tons more. (and me too!)

"A collection that is by turns heartening and harrowing, insightful and irreverent but, page after page, always honest. We don't remember our own birth, we can't reflect our own death, so the squawking arrival of parenthood and its glorious life tangle is our only true relationship with the cycle of creation. Here, in essays, poems and personal dispatches, is a sketch of that singular experience. The best thing you can say about book on birth? It delivers. And this one does."

--Geoff Boucher, Los Angeles Times

“I'm a father of seven and figured that by osmosis maybe I'd learned something about motherhood. But this book opened my eyes and my heart and made me realize how much I don't know and didn't understand. For me, Not What I Expected is a journey through the looking glass, to the other side of the miracle. Reading it is an experience that I will always treasure.”

--William Mckeen, Professor and Chair, University of Florida Department of Journalism. Author of Highway 6: A Father-and-Son Journey Through the Middle ofAmerica

This book, full of pathos and humor, explores every aspect of motherhood. The writers in this anthology take you on a ride to many unexpected places: from the terrifying terrain of losing a baby to the exaltation of a successful pregnancy against the odds. Here you'll find the blood and sweat and grit of parenthood, all the real secrets that nobody tells you before your baby is born.

--Jennifer Margulis, author of "Why Babies Do That" and "Toddler: Real-Life Stories of Those Fickle, Irrational, Urgent, Tiny People We Love"

Explain "Enough"

When one set of goals is reached, how do you decide on the next plan of action?

In the summer heat, I have grown a prairie garden. Last summer, it was grass with mulberry shoots and a few thin wildflowers pushing their way towards the sun. Now, the bed is a procession of nodding blossoms and color. I do not know their names. There is no one to introduce us.

The dog and I walk across a salvaged piece of the real prairie. At the top-of-the-world, he leaps through the tall grasses, arching his back as if he is a dolphin breaking through into sunshine. The light glitters across his dark coat, his tounge lolls pink as a tropical shell.

I want to say "Please listen; stop shaking your head" but this is not what you've come for.
The papers criss-cross the table; no one wants to pick them up. I walk briskly from the air-conditioned room, through the double glass doors. What seemed wise once: cement pathways and cinder-block walls.

New PL For Fall

"Though I do think poetry has some relationship to reality."

-Donald Hall
The New Poet Laureate

Whew! That's a good sign-considering I've just finished writing a 29-page paper on the topic.

Have you read any of his poems written to Jane after her death? I saw the book recently but had to put it back; I don't think I'm ready to read such poems about cancer and the aftermath just yet.

Congratulations Mr. Hall. Enjoy the pears.