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Margaret DeRitter Presents: SINGING BACK TO THE SIRENS with Jennifer Clark

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Bookbug & this is a bookstore

3019 Oakland Drive

Kalamazoo, MI 49008

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Welcome two local authors for a poetry reading of their newest works.

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Singing Back to the Sirens explores the many ways that desire and love, loss and grief, can shape a woman's life. The poems in this two-part collection look at the loneliness of a newborn for her sick mother, the first stirrings of sexual desire for a best friend, the treacherous leap from a sheltered world of faith into lesbian life, the frustrations of falling for straight women, the alchemy of falling in love, the aftermath of losing it. In the first section, the poet sings back to the many women she has loved. In the second, she sings back to the one who sang the sweetest and the saddest songs.

Margaret DeRitter is the poetry editor and copy editor of Encore, a regional magazine based in Kalamazoo, Michigan. She was a winner of the 2018 Celery City Chapbook Contest, sponsored by Kalamazoo's Friends of Poetry, for her chapbook Fly Me to Heaven By Way of New Jersey. Her writing has appeared in the anthologies Surprised By Joy and Queer Around the World and in a number of journals, including The 3288 Review, which nominated her poem "At the top of Sleeping Bear Dunes" for a Pushcart Prize. Margaret has also written numerous magazine and newspaper articles. She worked for 22 years at the Kalamazoo Gazette and has taught journalism at Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo College. She was born and raised in New Jersey and has lived in Michigan since college. When not writing or editing, she often paddles Michigan lakes and rivers.

Joining Margaret is Jennifer Clark with her newest collection. A Beginner's Guide to Heaven is not so much concerned with moving earth towards heaven, as it is with yanking heaven to earth. Even amidst our haste, failures, distractions, and worries, it's all within reach. The poems invite us to see the mystery in the every day, and revel in the wonders of such things as moths, dandelions, dogs, and beer. These poems serve as a gateway to the inner journey. They remind us we are one holy family cut from the same cloth, spiritual explorers of this beautiful, broken world. This collection urges us to pay attention and get to work, "while we still have time to build."

Jennifer Clark is the author of two previous full-length poetry collections: Johnny Appleseed: The Slice & Times of John Chapman and Necessary Clearings. She is also the co-editor of the anthology, Immigration & Justice For Our Neighbors . Her poems, essays, and fiction have appeared in Women's Studies Quarterly, Fiction Fix, Columbia Journal, Concho River Review, Ecotone, and Flyway, among others. She lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan with her husband John and son Tom.

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Bookbug & this is a bookstore

3019 Oakland Drive

Kalamazoo, MI 49008

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No Refunds

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