Three from the Poetic Juggernaut

It’s highly unlikely you’ll recall I did an interview with poet Scott Ferry in November 2021. If you’d like to revisit: (I hope you’ll forgive me, Scott, for tarrying so long! Something called Covid hit and my creative juices were pulled elsewhere.) At long last, it’s time to look at a trio of hisContinue reading “Three from the Poetic Juggernaut”

Our Bodies, Ourselves—Ours to (Re)Claim

Once upon a time in 1971 when many readers of The Muses’ Refugia were in college, a blockbuster book swept through society: Our Bodies, Ourselves by Boston Women’s Health Book Collective and Judy Norsigian, which The New York Times years later acknowledged as a “book [that] changed lives for decades. As a college freshman, itContinue reading “Our Bodies, Ourselves—Ours to (Re)Claim”

A Very Mixed Bag of Books

A fantasy, a memoir, a poetry chapbook—maybe there’s one for you among this oddball gathering of literary pursuits! No room for comfort Dewi Hargreaves, a British author and illustrator, takes his imagination on a journey to post-apocalyptic northeast America (surprised me!) for this engaging fantasy dedicated to “the wanderers and the displaced.” In Eyes onContinue reading “A Very Mixed Bag of Books”

A bodacious—compassionate—memoir

“Sugar Daddy culture is the patriarchy at its ugliest…. ‘Please Daddy, can I have some pocket money?’ is not autonomy, it’s not equality, and it’s far from easy money.” If you’re a regular reader of The Muses’ Refugia, you know I have a fondness for anything and everything that comes out of Guts Publishing, perhapsContinue reading “A bodacious—compassionate—memoir”

“Don’t take any wooden ideals.”

William Heyen. Richard Blanco. Miriam Sagan. Sharon Olds. Campbell McGrath. Marge Piercy. Dan Giancola. There are only a mere handful of contemporary poets whom I hold in such high esteem that I immediately rush out and buy their new releases the instant they hit the bookstore (or the poet kindly gives me a copy). AsContinue reading ““Don’t take any wooden ideals.””

A Non-Fiction Triad: Alaska Here We Come

I first came across Adrienne Ross Scanlan’s poetry ten years or so ago when I was assistant editor at The Centrifugal Eye, a now defunct literary journal . Exactly which of Adrienne’s poems we published, I can’t recall—or even if we ended up with one of her works. I’m confident we did because, her writingContinue reading “A Non-Fiction Triad: Alaska Here We Come”

A Blitz of Books

What’s your next great read? Here are two I highly recommend, and one, well, you be the judge! The reek of damp and emptiness “Love affairs, one-night stands, beartbreak, joy, betrayal”—that is the essence in Deborah Price’s one words of her breathtaking memoir The Peanut Factory from Guts Publishing. The book recounts her unabashed, untarnishedContinue reading “A Blitz of Books”

From the Never-Ending Stack of Books—Three Sizzlers

As I am by no means a trendsetter, I was about ten years late getting to the Shades of Gray series. Maybe it’s just that books come into our lives (like teachers) when the student is ready. Since I’ve been writing more erotica lately, it seemed time to tackle these. And I’m so glad IContinue reading “From the Never-Ending Stack of Books—Three Sizzlers”

“Last chances to experience joy”

This is a book about dying and death. This is a remarkably uplifting book. That consummate novelist Laury A. Egan is able to achieve such a balance of emotional response among readers shouldn’t have come as a surprise to me. I’ve followed her career since her first major publication, Jenny Kidd (2012), but this bookContinue reading ““Last chances to experience joy””

“The anatomy of genius”

I killed three lanai intruders with this book, two wasps and a wolf spider. (Had to. Allergies.) But it is Enid Shomer who slays our hearts with her 2020 collection Shoreless. I can’t remember when I have been so completely bowled over by a collection of poetry. “Exquisite ” leaps to mind. And “masterful, ”Continue reading ““The anatomy of genius””