Monthly Archives: March 2021

March Madness Is Divinest Sense (Sort of)

Having a March Madness bracket for poems provided excitement for kids and enlightenment for this teacher.

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Mothers with a Mind of Their Own

Anyone with an elderly parents–and anyone with a three-year-old–will related to Milne’s “James James Morrison Morrison.”

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Freed Like a Beached Whale

Our spirits have curiously been lifted by the freeing of the Ever Given. Various whale poems come to mind.

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Plague Lit on Life Returning to Normal

Plague Lit teaches us how people behave DURING plagues. How about how they behave when life returns to normal? Camus may be best on this.

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Choosing the Desert over Bondage

Marge Piercy’s “Maggid” is a powerful Passover poem about the courage it takes to abandon what is familiar.

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Haaland and Silko’s Laguna Pueblo Vision

The new Secretary of the Interior comes from the same tribe as novelist Leslie Marmon Silko and appears to hold the same view of the earth.

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A Stuck Ship, a Pound of Flesh

The Evergreen cargo ship, stuck in the Suez canal, brings to mind a Shylock passage from “Merchant of Venice.”

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Why I Think the Way I Think

I survey my intellectual history, especially the evolution of my thinking about literature’s impact on human behavior.

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Victims of White Supremacist Exoticizing

In “When I Was Growing Up,” Nellie Wong speaks to how American whites have long exoticized Asian-Americans.

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  • Literature is as vital to our lives as food and shelter. Stories and poems help us work through the challenges we face, from everyday irritations to loneliness, heartache, and death. Literature is meant to mix it up with life. This website explores how it does so.

    Please feel free to e-mail me [rrbates (at) smcm (dot) edu]. I would be honored to hear your thoughts and questions about literature.

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