Readers’ Place

Readers Place: Celebrating National Poetry Month

APRIL 2019

April is the month in which we celebrate the words and work of poets. Among our new titles is one by Maplewood poet Sondra Gash.



See        the instinct for painting is the instinct for power

Women don’t

choose work over love

but it’s not the same for men


See        all men are in love with themselves


Like Diego   &   your father


& even an artist

will leave his wife behind


but he can’t             if she runs harder

if she’s both            hunter & sacrifice


Virgin: PoemsSotelo, Analicia. “My mother as the voice of Kahlo.” Virgin, 2019.






…It takes a romantic to leave a city: I understand this now. Those cardboard boxes, how they opened faithfully for you, little brown hearts, how they carried everything you would ask of them.


twenty-ninth yearAlyan, Hala. “The Socratic method.” The twenty-ninth year,   2018.






as a toddler my brother learns to answer a bricklayer uncle:


            “what ladies like”                   “suga suga”

            “what mens like”                    “hugs”


–        a smeared sweet on his cheek in the parenthesis of a grin


indecencyReed, Justin  Phillip. “The Leak in This Old Building.” Indecency, 2018.






My father keeps blooming

like the tulips saluting in the grass.

One of a dying breed: leftists, militant yet benign,

still high on making this a better world.


This is America. A sweep of his hand-

And it’s better than a picture show.  


Suit and DressGash, Sondra. “On a Bench in Union Square in April.” Suit and Dress, 2019.






When I was brave, I pushed my feet into the pedals

And these pushed me into the world I wanted to be in.

I was high and above all the other birds.

The birds flew in harlequins around me.


Loves YouSarah Gambito, Sarah. “Ancestor.” Loves You, 2019.





Compiled by Ina Rimpau


Posted by Robert Nealon | 10 Apr 2019 | Comments Off on Readers Place: Celebrating National Poetry Month

Reader’s Place: Celebrating Maplewood Ideas Festival 2019!

For the past six years, Maplewood Memorial Library has celebrated local thinkers, movers and shakers in our Ideas Festival. This year you can hear and meet the authors of the following titles:

Orgasmic LeadershioOrgasmic leadership: profiting from the coming surge in women’s sexual health and wellness , by Rachel Braun Scherl.  2018.
Scherl takes on women’s long-neglected needs and satisfaction with a strategic business focus, humor, insight, passion, and in the process, exposes an incredibly complex tangle of outdated barriers and challenges that stand in the way of the successful commercialization of women’s health products and services.

Orgasmic LeadershioPeriods gone public : making a stand for menstrual equity, by Jennifer Weiss-Wolf. 2017.
After centuries of being shrouded in taboo and superstition, periods have gone mainstream. Seemingly overnight, a new, high-profile movement has emerged–one dedicated to bold activism, creative product innovation, and smart policy advocacy–to address the centrality of menstruation in relation to core issues of gender equality and equity. Weiss-Wolf challenges readers to face stigma head-on and elevate an agenda that recognizes both the power–and the absolute normalcy–of menstruation.

Branding of Right-wing ActivismThe branding of right-wing activism: the news media and the Tea Party, by Khadijah Costley-White. 2018.

The Tea Party’s ascent to major political phenomenon can be attributed to the way in which partisan and non-partisan news outlets “branded” the Party as a pot-stirrer in political conflicts over race, class, and gender. In other words, the news media played a major role in developing, cultivating, and promoting populism’s brand, particularly within the news spaces of commentary and opinion. In a media environment in which everyone has the opportunity to tune out, tune in, and speak back, The Branding of Right-Wing Activism ultimately shows that distinctions between citizens, journalists, activists, politicians, celebrities, and consumers are more symbolic than concrete.

Abloom & AwryAbloom & awry,  by Tina Kelley.  2017

With the eye of a journalist and the heart of a caretaker, Kelley shares her love of words, fireworks, kites, sea-salt caramels, metaphor, and humans. Armed with a generative impulse, her poems pay close attention to the dark, moving through it with wit and affirmation. Kelley is also the author of Almost Home: Helping kids move from homelessness to hope, and The Gospel of Galore.


Compiled by Ina Rimpau

Posted by Robert Nealon | 28 Mar 2019 | Comments Off on Reader’s Place: Celebrating Maplewood Ideas Festival 2019!

Reader’s Place: Celebrating Women’s History Month

Women Activists

When They Call You a TerroristWhen they call you a terrorist: a Black Lives Matter memoir, by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Asha Bandele ; with a foreword by Angela Davis. 2018 BIOG Khan-Cullors

Khan-Cullors, artist, organizer, freedom fighter as well as Fulbright scholar and recipient of the Sidney Peace Prize, recounts, with coauthor Bandele, her personal experiences and those as a founder of the Black Lives Matter Movement, when she, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tomrti used social media, the arts, and civil activism to respond to the killings of two young black men, Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown.

ShamelessShameless : a sexual reformation, by Nadia Bolz-Weber. 2019 261.835 BOL

In the spirit of Martin Luther, Rev. Bolz-Weber – founding pastor of House for All Sinners and Saints, a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in Denver, Colorado – calls for a reformation of the way believers understand and express their sexuality. Bolz-Weber draws on experiences from her own life as well as her parishoners’, then puts them side by side with biblical narrative and theology to explore what the church has taught and about sex, and the harm that has often come as a result.

Read & RiotRead & riot : a Pussy Riot guide to activism, by Nadya Tolokonnikova. 2019 782.421 TOL

Tolokonnikova made global headlines when she was arrested in 2012 for singing an anti-Putin song with her punk band, Pussy Riot, in a Russian church. After spending 18 months in prison, Tolokonnikova reentered society emboldened by her torment and scrappier than ever. Her new book is an ultimate how-to guide for budding activists looking to boost their radical prowess.

InsurrectoInsurrecto: a novel, by Gina Apostol. 2018 FIC Apostol

Histories and personalities collide in this literary tour-de-force about the Philippines’ present and America’s past by the PEN Open Book Award-winning author of Gun Dealer’s Daughter. Two women, a Filipino translator and an American filmmaker, go on a road trip in Duterte’s Philippines, collaborating and clashing in the writing of a film script about a massacre during the Philippine-American War. Within the spiraling voices and narrative layers of Insurrecto are stories of women–artists, lovers, revolutionaries, daughters–finding their way to their own truths and histories.


Compiled by Ina Rimpau


Posted by Robert Nealon | 7 Mar 2019 | Comments Off on Reader’s Place: Celebrating Women’s History Month

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