The voices of a soldier, his wife, and his daughter interweave to tell the story of Soviet controlled, post-WWII Hungary as forces move the country toward revolution. These documentary and narrative poems expose corrupt politics, secret police, agent provocateurs, and family secrets. Extensively researched, UPRISING provides a revealing glimpse into life behind the iron curtain.
"History, in its root sense, means story, and has often found its truest expression in poetry. Michele Battiste's vivid account of the Soviet occupation of Hungary and the revolt of 1956 follows three sharply drawn characters, Jóska, Jutka and Erika, as their lives are changed by events much larger than themselves. With the intimacy of lyric and the scale of epic, UPRISING brings an important story of the twentieth century close to us in vital terms. Immigration is the great human story, not just the great American story. This is a part of it everyone should remember."-David Mason
"It's true: a book of poems can be as rich as your favorite historical novel without losing the lyric touches and verbal compaction we associate with poetry. It can have the researched authenticity of the best non-fiction off the bookstore's history shelf, and still come alive with poetry's gift for the intimate, the immediate, the vivacious. Michele Battiste's UPRISING is proof of this, as it takes us through the politics, the houses of terror, the uplifted fists, the enduring loves and lusts, the childhood play and adult fears, and the generational bondings of all things Budapest circa 1944-1956. This is an extraordinary collection, and its strain of defiant, blood-shirring gypsy music is the tonic you've been looking for."-Albert Goldbarth
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About the Author
She has received grants and awards from AWP, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the New York State Senate, the Center for the American West, and the Poetry Society of Virginia. In 2006, Battiste received a Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant to conduct research in Budapest, Hungary for "Uprising." In 2007, she was awarded a Blue Mountain Center Residency to complete the first draft of the book.
Battiste has taught poetry writing for Wichita State University (WSU), the Prison Arts Program in Hutchinson, KS, Gotham Writers' Workshops, and the national writing program Teen Ink. The 2004 MFA Poetry Fellow at WSU, she now lives in Boulder, CO where she works, writes, and wades in the creek.