The focus is a wonderful reminder, however, that popular music is a craft, not a lifestyle or a morality tale. By the s, as the group hemorrhages original members and devolves into a secondary market mainstay touring state festivals, biker rallies, and cruise ships, chapters feel like laundry lists of hired guns and roadies. And while ARS still exists today fronted by original keyboardist Dean Daughtry the only continuous member and initial vocalist Rodney Justo who quit in , time inevitably takes its toll.
Singer Ronnie Hammond the voice on the hits , bassist Paul Goddard, and drummer Robert Nix all passed away between and The irrepressible Buie, celebrated as a local hero in Dothan with a colorful mural, died at his beloved Eufaula retreat in His passing makes this worthy tribute to a group that always let its musicianship do its talking all the more poignant.
Jerry L. Hurley starts his book about a personal Appalachia— Wildcrafting: And Other Stories I Share Only with My Friends —by penning a love letter to the men, and women still listening in on the what the neighbors have to say in his hometown of Mammoth, West Virginia. But it is the hard work of wildcrafting—defined as a walk in the woods to seek and gather plants for food or medicinal purposes—that forms the maternal bonds that truly define this upbringing bound to a landscape.
We carefully picked them, each a treasure indeed, and we took what we needed with no thought of greed. These golden fried treasures fit for a king are a succulent herald of what Spring can bring. Hurley sets the tone for mischief to ensue throughout each chapter, in which he captures lessons learned on the countryside of life, carefully contained inside a capsule of a child-like mind. This is where unlikely friendships crossed socially acceptable race divides and railroad tracks as his family moved him back and forth from Cleveland, Ohio, before settling again in the familiar hollows of his obscure heritage.
Planted there once more, his epic tales of a drunken cow, Halloween pranks, plus exploding frogs, deftly compliment grown-up musings on prejudice, mental illness, the attack on Pearl Harbor, and homespun religious miracles. The hardest lesson learned is as satirical as it is serious. According to Hurley, you have to bury bodies of fresh frogs if you want to eat the legs. His pungent description of cooked mushrooms—but also how blackberries get picked in spring and ginseng dug in the fall—becomes a guidebook to all of life as a great adventure.
Just as we must be born to be able to die, the seeds we sow and shots we take go with us, as if we are just passing through. Hurley believes that the secret is not to forget how the forest floor feels under your feet, because without it how else would a person have stories worthy of sharing with her friends. Jennifer A. She lives in Alabama where she writes an entertainment column for The Eufaula Tribune.
It is a balm for a humankind that is no stranger to pain and self-flagellation, for a womanhood that is weary and pinioned. It is the simplicity and clearness of this imagery that helps these poems shine, despite the darkness which surrounds them. Familiar, comforting, but a small thrill, a curiosity for what we may find behind said door.
Horne has played with the structure of her poem here, dividing it not only into couplets but also into two separate numbered sections to denote the stillness and violence of witness. This structure also provides a reminder that a human relationship is a joining of two separate entities who can never fully merge. They are stillness broken by simple reverie. Its first section is homey, instructional, a treatise on how to properly make the bed, dust the furniture, fold the laundry. They praise female rage and extoll the Biblical Eve, always with the shortest lines, the fewest words, tightly-knit creations that can be held in the hand, their stitches clear, purposeful, economical.
Borrowed Light saves much of its mourning for its last few pages.
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Horne leaves us there to question our own lives. To look around at our circumstances, our reactions to those circumstances, and ask ourselves if we have let the darkness envelope us so completely that we are no longer living. She urges us to swallow that darkness, as heavy as it might have become, and create our own light in a world that, though indifferent to our survival, is ripe with wonders that can keep us going if we stop to savor them.
Borrowed Light is a peaceful book that reckons with its own sorrow, accepts its sadness, and fights to pull itself through that sadness, into another room, where, perhaps, the light is brighter. Where maybe it casts a shorter shadow. Kerry Madden-Lunsford and Emily Sutton have written a story that I greatly enjoyed reading to my soon-to-be five year old daughter. The story is set in the Great Smoky Mountains during the s. Written from a third person point of view, the tale is about a five year old girl and her pregnant mother working hard to maintain their family farm while the father is away at war.
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The young girl, Ernestine, is a hard-working, very determined little girl, who enjoys working alongside her very pregnant mother. In this delightful tale, Ernestine is shown milking the family cow and basking in the glory of a successful milking. Her mother, who understands the struggles of maintaining a family farm alone, volunteers to contribute milk to one of their neighbors. The young girl is charged with the task of carrying two jars of milk to her neighbor. Slightly intimidated by the distance, this brave girl is up for the challenge.
As she embarks on the lengthy journey, she reminds her mother that she is five years old and a big girl. Thus begins the major narrative of the story. Using the planets as her guide, this tenacious young lady embarks on her journey. Along the way, young Ernestine hears an seemingly ill-fated noise in the bushes and naturally assumes the worst. However, she meets this obstacle with bravery, reminding herself that she is strong and capable. As she descends deeper into the woods, she continues to hear very unsettling sounds, causing her to scurry.
Fortunately, each unsettling sound proves to be nothing more than calm, docile animals. Confident of her abilities, she continues on the journey but, eventually, she accidentally drops one of the milk-filled mason jars. Feelings of disappointment overtake young Ernestine as she arrives at her destination.
Ever so understanding, Mrs. Ramsay, welcomes young Ernestine and basks in the gift of a neighbor's milk. As the family celebrates this luxury, they thank young Ernestine and, soon enough, send her home. This young girl is able to prove that she is indeed a 'big girl.
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The infusion of figurative language brings to life each element young Ernestine experiences on her journey. For example, "She carried the jars in an old feed sack close to her heart while the mountains slept like giant elephants under a scattering of stars. In addition to the colorful language, vivid descriptions, and realistic depiction of life in the s, the motivation to keep trying stands out.
Even though Ernestine was faced with a difficult task to complete, she perseveres, even at her young age. I am a big girl! When selecting books to read to my young child I hope that she can make a connection to the text in a positive way.
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This book definitely provided me with that. The young girl, Ernestine, demonstrates traits that kids of any age can relate to.
Kerry Madden-Lunsford and Emily Sutton were able to infuse various educational and character building lessons in this carefully written book. No matter where you travel, every place has a cadence, a rhythm and melody interwoven with the sights, sounds, and people.
A Birmingham native, Wright shows readers the South as he sees it, from Walmart parking lots to Jaguar dealerships, suburbs to trailers, the book gives us a taste of what the South looks like today. In the telling of everyday moments captured with a careful eye, Wright reveals the funny, the absurd, the horrific, the human.
This is not a collection that is concerned with the absolution or salvation of a city with a disturbing legacy, but rather investigates what it is to be a city with a disturbing legacy. Wright tackles corruption, financial desperation, environmental disaster, the long shadow of Jim Crow and a host of other issues throughout the sixteen stories in the collection. The narration of all the stories but one are in the first person giving readers a wealth of perspectives.
A black man with an Albino son struggles to raise him in an unwelcoming suburb. A chef making meals for the death row condemned grapples with spiritual epiphanies and loss. A city boy runs away from his past, taking up residence on an old rundown plantation that his sister attempts to rescue him from.
All of the characters are untamed in some way, each of them an oddity born of the South. Having taken part in the violence against black folks, the former fireman becomes driven by a monomania to understand the philosophical and historical implications of the Civil Rights movement. The protagonist hopes to make a discovery about humanity. He longs to know that mankind is better than his worst mistakes, that others would have been stronger, would have chosen something different.
There is hardly anything about his writing that is quiet. This expansiveness of language breaths into his descriptions, giving the prose a deep sense of place. Throughout the book the language prompts readers to feel that they actually are somewhere, not just reading about being somewhere. Wright set out to do something challenging and ambitious by taking on so many varied Southern issues and viewpoints.
His writing is at times overwrought, failing to recognize the difference between when a word is necessary and when it is simply self-important. I want this country to inhabit the poetic splendor and formal innovation of Ashley M.
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