Mule & Pear
Rachel Eliza Griffiths (Author)
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DescriptionThese poems speak to us with voices borrowed from the pages of novels of Alice Walker, Jean Toomer, and Toni Morrison--voices that still have more to say, things to discuss. Each struggles beneath a yoke of dreaming, loving, and suffering. These characters converse not just with the reader but also with each other, talking amongst themselves, offering up their secrets and hard-won words of wisdom, an everlasting conversation through which these poems voice a shared human experience.
New Issues Poetry & Prose
October 03, 2011
5.9 X 0.4 X 9.6 inches | 0.5 pounds
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About the Author
RACHEL ELIZA GRIFFITHS is the author of Miracle Arrhythmia (Willow Books) and The Requited Distance (Sheep Meadow Press). She received her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and her M.A. in English Literature from the University of Delaware. Her work has appeared in Callaloo, Crab Orchard Review, Indiana Review, RATTLE, Brilliant Corners, Puerto Del Sol, and many other journals. A Cave Canem Fellow, she is the recipient of fellowships from Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, Vermont Studio Center, New York State Summer Writers Institute, the Cave Canem Foundation and others. A photographer and painter, her visual work has been published widely in both national and international magazines and journals. She teaches at Sarah Lawrence College and lives in New York.
"The poems give voice to a cross-generational dialogue that includes protagonists from American classics like Nella Larsen's Passing (1929), Jones's Eva's Man (1976), Alice Walker's The Color Purple (1982), Morrison's The Bluest Eye (1970), as well as from lesser-known American texts like Valerie Martin's historical novel Property (2004), and contemporary African classics-in-process like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun (2006). Yet while Griffiths's focus is on the most poignant, memorable and troubling characters of black women's fiction, black female characters from male-authored works like Jean Toomer's hybrid New Negro text Cane (1923), and August Wilson's play Two Trains Running (1992), as well as voices from Adrienne Kennedy's play Funnyhouse of a Negro (1964) and Nina Simone's classic 1966 song "Four Women" share the pages of Mule & Pear with foremothers of the black female novel. Plucking chords from each of these voices, Griffiths orchestrates collaborative testimonials and incisive debates about the most pressing issues facing black women's writing and black women's lives.....The want you feel at the end of Mule & Pear is just the kind of want you hope for in turning the last page of a good book. It's the wish that the voices you have been sitting with will not leave, the promise that the conversation will continue."--Mecca Jamilah Sullivan "Cerise Press"