“We did not feel prepared to be the heirs of such a terrifying hour” –Amanda Gorman

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For any of us who watched the insurrection of the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. last week, the words of Amanda Gorman, the inaugural poet, rings true. This poem was, ultimately, optimistic, portending a better future. Poetry can speak to us like nothing else when times are dark.

I wrote a collection of poetry after my partner died of Alzheimer’s Disease. It was a very dark time in my life. My partner, a brilliant mathematician, deteriorated quickly, leaving me in darkness. The writing of the poetry helped me to process what happened. I have been working on Touch My Head Softly with my publisher, Finishing Line Press, to finish the process. It has given me purpose through the pandemic.

Here is the link to the book at Finishing Line:

https://www.finishinglinepress.com/product/touch-my-head-softly-by-eileen-kennedy/

Here is the link to the book on Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3609820860https://www.finishinglinepress.com/product/touch-my-head-softly-by-eileen-kennedy/

Culture and Writing

Culture is a fuzzy term. Some cultures just have speech, no writing. Language affects the way we write. Some writers are multilingual, and that’s a definite advantage. Speech is flexible and can be used in particular ways in a cultural setting. We speak naturally in many diverse backgrounds as babies, from the playground, to school, to home. Writing can also be a misery for a child in school who hasn’t mastered the rules.Writing is where we must be precise. Speech is where we get to be imprecise, to play.

Imagine, as writers, playing with our words the way we play with speech. We can make magical words in our writing. Witness the incantation to open the caves entrance in Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings. Gabriel García Márquez made frog kings.

So how do we make magical writing in our culture? I’m not sure. Does anyone want to answer this question, just reply to my blog.

My latest collection of poems, Touch Ny Head Softly, will be out soon from Finishing Line Press.

Check it out here:

https://www.finishinglinepress.com/product/touch-my-head-softly-by-eileen-kennedy/

You can also find me on Goodreads at:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3609820860

Book Clubs

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A friend of mine was recently asked to read at a book club meeting. The group had adopted her book to read that month, and since she was local, they asked her to come and read excerpts.

In Seattle, a group of poets formed a group called “A Poet at the Table,”where different area poets did readings at local book clubs.

Do you have any experience with book clubs?

My new book, Touch My Head Softly, is about my partner having Alzheimer’s Disease.

I guess this might interest an Alzheimer’s support group. Do you have any experience with Book Clubs?

My book can be found at:

https://www.finishinglinepress.com/product/touch-my-head-softly-by-eileen-kennedy/

Add me to your bookshelf or review me on Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3609820860

Big Bear Books Opens in Easthampton, MA

Big Bear Books has just opened in the Keystone Building in Easthampton, MA, 122 Pleasant Street #132. Check out the website:

http://www.bigbearboksandcafe.com

Watch the website for events listings.

Hours are:

Tuesday – Saturday 8:30-4:30, Sunday 9-3.

This beautiful new store features a coffee bar, where up to 10 people can be seated at a time. Come in and relax, grab a coffee, and read a good book.

Big Bear will also take your book orders at:

413-320-8946 or veronica@bigbearbooksandcafe.com

You can also arrange to donate your books here. Stop by and take a look.

Straw Dog Writers Night Out October 6

Straw Dog Writers Night Out October 6

Straw Dog Writers Guild

Writers Night In – Featured Reader Eileen Kennedy

is featuring Eileen P. Kennedy, author of the upcoming book of poetry from Finishing Line Press:

Touch My Head Softly

On October 6 at 7 pm EST,

The poems sensitively portrays a man living with Alzheimer’s Disease and his partner’s experiences. To join the viewing, email

wno@strawdogwriters.org to receive the Zoom link to the event.

Virtual Reading Sponsored by the Quabbin Quills and the Athol Library Wednesday at 6 pm

On June 24, Quabbin Quills and the Athol Library will sponsor a virtual reading by Marie Eclair, Michael Young, Eileen P. Kennedy and Diana Norman.

https://www.facebook.com/events/811618845914455/

Tune in at 6 pm.

red framed eyeglasses on newspapers

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Straw Dog Writers Guild Publishes My Poem “Current Times”

On June 13th, Straw Dog Writers Guild Will Publish My Poem “Current Times” on their Pandemic Project website.  Take a look:
https://www.strawdogwriters.org/pandemicprojectred framed eyeglasses on newspapers
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Emily Dickinson Museum Sponsors Poetry Reading May 7 at 6:30 pm (EST)

The Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst Massachusetts is sponsoring a poetry reading with some excellent poets. You can view this by going to the Amherst Media Website:

 

http://161.77.57.225/CablecastPublic

three books stacked

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They are broadcasting Arts Night Out from 5 to 8 pm. View the reading with the Emily Dickinson Museum from 6:30 to 7:30 EST