Joseph Brodsky’s Reading List for Essential Conversations

In 1972, poet Joseph Brodsky angered government officials in his native Russia and was expelled from the country.  With the help of fellow poet W.H. Auden, Brodsky settled in the United States, found a position at Yale and taught classes at Mount Holyoke as well.  Later, he accepted professorships at both Cambridge and the University of…

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Libraries and Kids: The Only True Magic

True Story:  I remember getting my library card more vividly than I recall getting my driver’s license.  My best memories of childhood were going to the library with my mom and checking out armfuls of books, which she would read to me for hours on end.  At two, I am told, I would stand on…

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One Hundred Years: Celebrating Albert Camus

Today would have been Albert Camus‘s 100th birthday. I have had a crush on Albert Camus for a long time.  C’mon… he’s hot, rebellious, an intellectual, and like most artists I’m madly in love with, dead… the ultimate unattainable. Although he is often called an existentialist, Camus rejected that label (“Sartre and I are often…

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Happy Birthday, PBS!

On Sunday, November 3, PBS turned forty-four years old. Wow.   That’s a lot of numbers.  I’d have to count with this vintage piece from Sesame Street a bunch of times to count THAT high! PBS’s mission, from the beginning, has been to “inform and inspire the diversity reflected in the American audience.”  Astonishingly, even with…

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After the Dash: Ten Literary Epitaphs

It’s Halloween!  In honor of the creepiest of holidays, why not contemplate your own mortality? GOOD TIMES! Here are ten well-written or interesting conceived final goodbyes from folks (or folks who knew them) who have shuffled off this mortal coil. 1.  William Shakespeare (1564-1616) [Gravestone in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford-upon-Avon] GOOD FREND FOR IESVS SAKE…

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