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Local News from Someplace Else: Paperback – June 18, 2013
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2016 Book Awards
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From the Back Cover
--Shara McCallum, author of This Strange Land and The Face of Water: New and Selected Poems
"Marjorie Maddox brings us Local News from Someplace Else, a 'brief alphabet of grief,' 'where loss . . . flies fastest / in the smallest of words': hurricanes, fires, school shootings, mine cave-ins. But she is also a reporter of joy: births, barbecues, retirement parties, hotel rooms with 'the hundred-plus / channels of cable / deliciously at our command.' 'We are in love / with room service at midnight,' Maddox writes, and you will be too."
--Barbara Crooker, author of Gold
"Marjorie Maddox's poems move with faith and grace through the violent landscapes of contemporary America, through the humdrum chores of parenting and work, through the thin spaces that divide the living from the dead. Hers is a poetry haunted by the presence of survivors, and, as she confesses, 'What we hold / is ourselves holding on.' In the gift of her deeply reflective poems, we glimpse 'the sad joy that lets her see / all that the world is.'"
--Todd Davis, author of In the Kingdom of the Ditch and The Least of These
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Speaking in voices that vacillate between the somber yet concise tones of news anchors reporting on painful tragedies, and the nervous fluttering at the maternal breast, Maddox makes it clear that the only way to survive the world is to truly live in it fully. In “Anniversary Coffee,” the speaker lovingly attests to the passage of time, to elevate an otherwise mundane event:
Those behind the counter
know us and know
when to save what we want,
can order for us, smile at how we smile
at each other’s drenched winsomeness. You are
not what I order but what I order now
across the café table, across the morning
spread with such a delectable savor.
The familiarity of a local setting, coupled with the familiarity of an intimate bond grounds the couplets of the poem, as the lines enjamb and cascade over one another, in what William Wordsworth calls in the Preface to Lyrical Ballads, the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings.
Equally important in the work is the coupling of tension, pain or sorrow with faith in something greater. Maddox, the director of Creative Writing and Professor at Lock Haven University, is able to show us what remains after trauma, even it is simply our ability to endure.Read more ›
It is easy to say, "Oh how sad," when we see stories like the ones featured in Marjorie's poems on the news, but we so easily brush these stories away without a second thought. Marjorie's poems remind us of the reality of the world we live in, and provide us with an opportunity to reflect on what these events say about humanity, not necessarily for the event's sake, but for how we as a people respond to these events, even long after they have passed.
Reflection gives us a chance for redemption. The one triumph that is born of tragedy is that it gives us the opportunity to remember our humanity: to offer our resources for the aid of those who have lost everything, to put an arm around those who mourn and to mourn with them, to bring life back to one another in the midst of destruction, and to not let despair take our humanity from us. Reading these poems reminds us of the stories that we all heard and perhaps ignored at the time, but the beauty is that they remind us that it's never too late to let the past heal us for our future. Marjorie's poems are filled with hope and a prompting to remember our humanity and find healing.