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Turn Me Loose: The Unghosting of Medgar Evers by Frank X Walker
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Tell Me More: Civil Rights Turmoil In Verse: Retelling Medgar Evers’ Story
Around the void left by the murder of Medgar Evers in 1963, the poems in this collection speak, unleashing the strong emotions both before and after the moment of assassination. Poems take on the voices of Evers’s widow, Myrlie; his brother, Charles; his assassin, Byron De La Beckwith; and each of De La Beckwith’s two wives. Except for the book’s title,”Turn me loose,” which were his final words, Evers remains in this collection silent. Yet the poems accumulate facets of the love and hate with which others saw this man, unghosting him in a way that only imagination makes possible.
Book of Hours: Poems by Kevin Young
NPR Poetry: Twinning Grief And Hope, A Poet Softens Pain’s Sharp Edge
Fresh Air: Kevin Young On Blues, Poetry And ‘Laughing To Keep From Crying’
NPR Poetry: Ice Cube Sculptures, Tulips And Death: A 2014 Poetry Preview
What could be better, or harder, than death and birth in one book? Young is our prolific chronicler of the state of the African-American union, but also of fatherhood, of son-hood. These poems counter the grief of the father’s death with the bewildering joy of a child’s birth. This is mourning with its feet on the ground — of the dead father’s dogs, Young writes, “Their grief is colossal// & forgetful./ Each day they wake/ seeking his voice,//their names.” He also evokes new fatherhood with all the grit: “Like the rest of us,” he says to his newborn son, “You swim// In your own piss.” Young has captured true adulthood between the covers of a book.
In Defense of Nothing: Selected Poems, 1987-2011 by Peter Gizzi
Gizzi’s poems blend the most enduring experimental techniques — sudden jumps, seemingly missing bits of info, reverence for the obscure — with god-awful heartbreaking emotional outbursts, sheer sweetness and hurt naked on the page. His blunt declarations become sudden questions, for which the answers are only more poems. “The present is always coming up to us, surrounding us,” he writes in the title poem. “It’s hard to imagine atoms, hard to imagine hydrogen & oxygen binding, it’ll have to do.” This selection brings together poems from his hard-to-find first two books with his picks for the best of his more recent three. What is contemporary poetry about? Gizzi has one plausible answer.
They Don’t Kill You Because They’re Hungry, They Kill You Because They’re Full by Mark Bibbins
Bibbins is today’s poetry’s hipster cynic. His poems are laugh-out-loud funny, but they just can’t stand the way things are turning out, despite some delight on the way to bad ends: “how do we delete/ what’s onscreen when someone put a foot/ through it last night,” he wonders. Here, pop music and the Internet butt heads with the eternal. The book’s a little crazy, packed with air quotes and brackets, jokes and condemnations, forms that explode across the page. Crazily enough, it’s also packed with truth.
The Pedestrians by Rachel Zucker
Two books in one, The Pedestrians combines a sequence of fables about a highly pressurized, but not unusual, domestic life — “They slept in the smoke-drenched bed or rather the husband snored and sputtered and she lay awake and unseeing under her chilled eye mask” — with a group of confessional lyrics that reveal dreams, city life, sex, love and parenthood: “I don’t want to have coffee or not have coffee / or listen to the This American Life podcast on infidelity / which makes me tired b/c I don’t want to have sex w// anyone.” Zucker reminds us how wild contemporary poetry gets when it spends Saturday nights at home.
Time is a Toy: The Selected Poems of Michael Benedikt
NPR Poetry: Wise, Funny Poems, Saved From The Trash Bin In The Nick Of ‘Time’
Michael Benedikt (1935 2007), who has been occasionally grouped with the New York School poets, published five books of poetry in his lifetime, and edited several anthologies, including the influential The Prose Poem (1976) and The Poetry of Surrealism (1974). This collection brings together for the first time work from all five of those long out-of-print volumes, along with work from his five unpublished manuscripts, which were nearly destroyed after his death. Finally, this once widely published and influential voice is back in print, and a fuller understanding of the development of American surrealism and the prose poem in the 1960s and 1970s is possible. A lifelong New Yorker, Benedikt was at various times an associate editor with Art News and Art International, managing editor of Locus Solus, and poetry editor of the Paris Review. Benedikt also taught at institutions such as Sarah Lawrence, Bennington, Vassar, and Boston University.
Letter Composed During a Lull in the Fighting: Poems by Kevin Powers
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NPR: With Poetic Intensity, Kevin Powers Tackles The Terror Of War
An Iraq war veteran, National Book Award finalist and author of The Yellow Birds offers poems capturing the life of a soldier, including waiting in the dusty Middle Eastern heat and writing a love letter back home.
Between Worlds by Avi Avital
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Classical MPR: New Classical Tracks: An Instrument Between Worlds
A genre-defying tour of the globe exploring the nexus between classical, popular and traditional music uniquely inhabited by Avi Avital and his magical mandolin.
From Bach to Bluegrass to Balkan Beats, the mandolin is the chameleon of the music world - every culture and musical genre features the mandolin or one of its close relatives - and Avi Avital is this beautiful instruments most charismatic, versatile exponent.
After the success of the Bach recording, Avi returns to again defy expectations with a selection of beautiful melodies and delightful dances from Europe, Central Asia, and the Americas, each with roots in popular folk traditions, arranged by some of the worlds greatest classical composers. The resulting dialogue between North and South, East and West, New and Old, Classical and Traditional - offers a captivating musical journey Between Worlds.
For this journey, Avi is joined by a host of special guests: from music legends such as Richard Galliano and Giora Feidman, to DG stars such as Catrin Finch, accompanied by a hand-picked ensemble of virtuoso friends from around the world. The joy is palpable, the colors and rhythms irresistible.
Repertoire highlights include the popular Monti Czardas, Bachianas Brasilieras (Villa-Lobos), Blochs spiritual Nigun, Spanish, Bulgarian, Romanian, Cuban and Georgian folk dances, and a very special Piazzolla tango.
Beethoven Piano Sonatas, Vol. 2 by Jean-Efflam Bavouzet
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Classical MPR: Regional Spotlight: Jean-Efflam Bavouzet
Jean-Efflam Bavouzet continues his complete chronological survey of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. This three-disc set runs from the Op. 22 Sonata in B flat major to the great ‘Waldstein’ Sonata Op. 53. - The first volume in the series received high praise, with BBC Music Magazine describing his performances as ‘distinguished and virtuosic’ and Fanfare stating ‘his readings will withstand the test of time’.
Clara Schumann: Complete Piano Works
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Classical MPR: Learning to Listen: Clara Wieck Schumann
Although for many years after her death Clara Schumann was not widely recognized as a composer, as a pianist she made an impression which lasts until today. She was one of the first pianists to perform from memory, making that the standard for concertizing. Trained by her father to play by ear and to memorize, she gave public performances from memory as early as age thirteen, a fact noted as something exceptional by her reviewers.
She was also instrumental in changing the kind of programs expected of concert pianists. In her early career, before her marriage to Robert, she played what was then customary, mainly bravura pieces designed to showcase the artist’s technique, often in the form of arrangements or variations on popular themes from operas, written by virtuosos such as Thalberg, Herz, or Henselt. And, as it was also customary to play one’s own compositions, she included at least one of her own works in every program, works such as her Variations on a Theme by Bellini (Op. 8) and her popular Scherzo (Op. 10). However, after settling into married life, probably under the influence of Robert, her performances focused almost exclusively on more serious music by Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, and Schumann.
Tine by Tine Thing Helseth
Classical MPR: Interview: Tine Thing Helseth
TINE is the eponymous recital disc by the exciting young Norwegian trumpet virtuoso Tine Thing Helseth. Her first two albums for EMI Classics (Storyteller and tenThing’s 10) were critically acclaimed, with Gramophone praising her “soulful approach to phrasing, quite astonishingly outstanding intonation and open and honest sound”. Now Tine Thing Helseth presents a personal choice of transcribed songs and original works which reveal the trumpet’s lyric voice and takes us on a varied journey through the musical landscape of the late 19th and 20th centuries.
TINE features original compositions for trumpet and piano by Ibert, Glazunov, Enescu, Edvard Hagenrup Bull and Hindemith; trumpet and piano arrangements of works by Puccini, de Falla, Rachmaninov and Kreisler and the Divertimento for solo trumpet by Øistein Sommerfeldt. Helseth’s partner is pianist Kathryn Stott, with whom she tours this captivating repertoire in 2013-14 in the US.
Dvořák by Alisa Weilerstein
New Classical Tracks: Starting with a Rice Krispie Box
American cellist Alisa Weilerstein, described by the New York Times as one of the most exciting American cellists of the new generation, follows her critically acclaimed Decca debut recording of Elgars Cello Concerto with a vital new interpretation of Dvoraks Cello Concerto, coupled with some of his best-known melodies. This album captures the essential spirit of one of the greatest of all Romantic composers, reflecting Dvoraks deep-rooted love for his homeland.
Alisa Weilerstein joins forces with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra and its Czech Music Director, Jiri Bìlohlavek in a terrific and deeply authentic musical partnership. This radiant performance of the Cello Concerto was recorded in Pragues Rudolfinum, where Dvorak himself conducted the Czech Philharmonics inaugural concert in 1896. Other works on the album were recorded in the USA Dvoraks adopted second homeland.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
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NPR: Bilbo’s Back, With More Baggage Than Ever
All Things Considered: 'Hobbit 2,' 'Mr. Banks' Are Not Your Parents' Family Films
NPR’s The Two-Way: How Precious: You Can Explore Middle-Earth On Google Chrome
NPR’s The Salt: Elevenses And Then Some: How To Prepare A Feast Fit For A Hobbit
NPR’s Monkey See: Pop Culture Happy Hour: A Smaug Problem And The Holiday Music Blues
The Current: Movie Maven: ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’
The second in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug continues the adventure of the title character Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) as he journeys with the Wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellan) and thirteen Dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) on an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor.
How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity: A Guide to Financial Freedom by Patricia Carlin
Morning Edition: Scratch That: One Cat’s Struggle With Internet Stardom
An irreverent guide to promoting personal wealth by rendering one’s cat a viral sensation shares secrets for grooming a kitty for success, creating a winning video and making the most of a feline’s 15 minutes of fame.
Personalized Lake Wobegon Doormat
Every week, Garrison Keillor signs off his “News from Lake Wobegon” monologue with the signature expression “Where the women are strong. The men are good looking. And all of the children are above average.” Many fans at the live broadcasts expressed that this sentiment fit their family perfectly and, after seeing our personalized wood sign, asked if we had the quotation featured on a doormat. The wood sign was rectangular in shape, so we simply transferred the design to a rectangular-shaped doormat that can be personalized with a surname over the top of Garrison’s signature quote. Since then, we’ve gone through several different designs and were forced to switch vendors, and now we have settled on the half moon shape design that is a bit sturdier and crafted of natural coir with a rubber backing.
Garrison is not the biggest fan of the doormat as when it first debuted for sale, it actually outsold his new book (never before had a gift item done this!).
So, if the expression describes your family or one that you know that is headed by a strong woman, includes a good looking man and has “above average” children, you might give this wonderful doormat a try. If it’s perfect for the Bunsens, then it must be good enough for you!
(NOTE: We order 300 of the substrates at a time and can take up to 12 weeks to produce and put notes on the website during times when we are out. 300 came in late February and thus we are set to screen and send what will become a family treasure. BTW — the “The” comes pre-printed on the doormat above your last name and has garnered more than a few hilarious stories, so please be aware that it is pre-printed. Your last name will print exactly as you type it, so check punctuation and spelling!)