Author Guest Post and Giveaway: Girls Like Us by Elizabeth Hazen

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Good morning everyone. Please join me in welcoming Elizabeth Hazen as she stops by today to chat. There is also a link towards the end of the post to where you can enter to win a copy of her book. But first, here are the details about her latest collection, Girls Like Us….
Book Synopsis:
Girls Like Us is packed with fierce, eloquent, and deeply intelligent poetry focused on female identity and the contradictory personas women are expected to embody. The women in these poems sometimes fear and sometimes knowingly provoke the male gaze. At times, they try to reconcile themselves to the violence that such attentions may bring; at others, they actively defy it. Hazen’s insights into the conflict between desire and wholeness, between self and self-destruction, are harrowing and wise. The predicaments confronted in Girls Like Us are age-old and universal—but in our current era, Hazen’s work has a particular weight, power, and value.

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Stanley Park by Sapphira Olson

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source: review copy
title: Stanley Park
author: Sapphira Olson  (Twitter)
published: December 23, 2019
genre: poetry

blurb:
Stanley Park is a collection of 35 poems from parables author Sapphira Olson charting the story of two lovers through history as they are separated and then reunited all within the island of Stanley Park in Vancouver.

Olson weaves a beautiful and poignant narrative through a progression of emotional poetry taking the listener on a journey of hope driven by love.

Incorporating poems inspired by Squamish Nation history and legends, the collection explores themes of immortality, love, loss, the nature of consciousness, and culture.

Stanley Park itself is a beautiful 405-hectare public park that borders the downtown of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada and is mostly surrounded by waters of Burrard Inlet and English Bay. The park has a long history and was one of the first areas to be explored in the city.

“What shall it profit you if you turn the whole world into a gasometer and lose your own souls?” (Thomas H. Mawson about Stanley Park in his 1912 address to the Canadian Club)

my thoughts:

I love reading poetry so when I had a chance to read Stanley Park I happily dove in.
This collection of 35 poems by Sapphira Olson revolves around two lovers who break up and then reunite. I enjoyed dipping in and out of this set of poetry and would go back and re-read a few lines in order to savor them fully. There are themes of nature, old legends and love flowing throughout these poems. The history of  Stanley Park in Vancouver is woven in throughout which was also a nice touch.

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Serena’s Poetry Challenge February: Ask Me Why I Love You by Walter Everette Hawkins

As part of Serena’s Poetry Reading Challenge I will be sharing the poem I enjoyed the most that month on the last Tuesday of each month.
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One of the easiest, and possibly most difficult, will be getting people to sign up to read a poem-a-day through the Academy of American Poets Poem-a-Day service. The challenge is to read a poem-a-day for a week once per month and write about which poems were your favorite and why. You can write up a short blurb on your Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, or your blog. I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments each month.

After reading a poem a day for a week in February, the one I enjoyed most was: Ask Me Why I Love You Walter Everette Hawkins. This was my first time reading this poet and I  enjoyed this one so much because I like love poems. I enjoy the way this poem flows, simply and beautifully. I like all the examples he gives to show that sometimes you can simply love someone just because you do…“And I will ask the flower why it loves the Summer sun…”. 

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Ask Me Why I Love You by Walter Everette Hawkins

Ask me why I love you, dear,
And I will ask the rose
Why it loves the dews of Spring
At the Winter’s close;
Why the blossoms’ nectared sweets
Loved by questing bee,—
I will gladly answer you,
If they answer me.

Ask me why I love you, dear,
And I will ask the flower
Why it loves the Summer sun,
Or the Summer shower;
I will ask the lover’s heart
Why it loves the moon,
Or the star-besprinkled skies
In a night in June….

What do you think of this one? You can read the poem in full here.

You can sign up for a Poem A Day over @ Poets.org

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Nothing in this post is available for download. The flower photo is my own.

Serena’s Poetry Challenge January: Farewell by Alice Dunbar-Nelson

As part of Serena’s Poetry Reading Challenge I will be sharing the poem I enjoyed the most that month on the last Tuesday of each month.

poetry

One of the easiest, and possibly most difficult, will be getting people to sign up to read a poem-a-day through the Academy of American Poets Poem-a-Day service. The challenge is to read a poem-a-day for a week once per month and write about which poems were your favorite and why. You can write up a short blurb on your Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, or your blog. I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments each month.

After reading a poem a day for a week in January, the one I enjoyed most was: Farewell Alice by Dunbar-Nelson. This is not a poet I’d read before and I found her poem to be beautiful and bittersweet. I wonder if she wrote this about someone she personally could not be with and I wonder who that was. On reading more about the poet here, I found she led an interesting life and that she campaigned for the women’s suffrage movement.

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Farewell by Alice Dunbar-Nelson

Farewell, sweetheart, and again farewell;
To day we part, and who can tell
If we shall e’er again
Meet, and with clasped hands
Renew our vows of love, and forget
The sad, dull pain.

Dear heart, ’tis bitter thus to lose thee
And think mayhap, you will forget me;
And yet, I thrill
As I remember long and happy days
Fraught with sweet love and pleasant memories
That linger still

You go to loved ones who will smile
And clasp you in their arms, and all the while
I stay and moan
For you, my love, my heart and strive
To gather up life’s dull, gray thread
And walk alone……..

You can read the rest of the poem here. What do you think of this one?

You can sign up for a Poem A Day over @ Poets.org

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Nothing in this post is available for download. The sunflower photo is my own.

Making Discoveries: A guest post for The Bookworm Written by Jessica Goody

Jessica Goody Phoenix Cover Art

Hello everyone and TGIF. Please join me in giving a warm welcome to Jessica Goody author of  Phoenix: Transformation Poems  to my blog today as she stops by for a guest post and shares her poem titled Discoveries, just in time for National Poetry Month.

Making Discoveries: A guest post for The Bookworm

Written by Jessica Goody

I am endlessly fascinated by art, history, and the natural world, and all three deeply influence my writing. For most of my life I intended to become a marine biologist, and although my cerebral palsy prevented me from realizing that dream, I am an environmentalist, and much of my poetry is inspired by nature–especially the sea.

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