Mariahadessa Ekere TallieDear Continuum: Letters to a Poet Crafting Liberation

Grand Concourse Press, 2015

by Jen Fitzgerald on August 7, 2015

View on Amazon

Poetry is far more than crafting verse. Poetry is a way of thought and a way of being. It seeps into every aspect of a poet's life only to reveal that it is the life that seeped into poetry. In a series of letters penned to "Continuum," Mariahadessa Ekere Tallie offers hard won wisdom and a glimpse at an ideal. She takes "Continuum" and the reader through her journey of discovery and coming into being as an artist.
"Dear Continuum" is about access; access to mentorship, access to reading lists, access to doubt, and discovery. There was a tangible need within the community for a book like this. It was quite literally asked for, and Tallie answered that call.

I would like to think that we poets are the "Continuum," or that it exists on a different plane of being, one that can be tapped into, just as we do with poetry. The states of birth, coming to being, death and rebirth are as infinite as art–are part of the continuum.

In the poet's own words:

"When life threatens to shatter you and rip your illusions to shreds, write. When you are distracted by romance, write. When you are consumed by heartache, write. When you are rejoicing, grieving, questioning, certain, write. Life itself will give you a chance to feel everything. I've never set a fire to feel the flames singe me. I already know the flames will come. So will water."

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

Mrinalini ChakravortyIn Stereotype: South Asia in the Global Literary Imaginary

August 2, 2015

In Stereotype: South Asia in the Global Literary Imaginary (Columbia University Press, 2014) is a masterful account of the importance of the stereotype in English language South Asian literature. Mrinalini Chakravorty explores such tropes as the crowd in Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children; slums in Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger; and death in Michael Ondaatje's book […]

Read the full article →

Alexander EtkindWarped Mourning: Stories of the Undead in the Land of the Unburied

July 26, 2015

Theoretical and historical accounts of postcatastrophic societies often discuss melancholia and trauma at length but leave processes of mourning underexplored.  In Warped Mourning: Stories of the Undead in the Land of the Unburied (Stanford UP, 2013), Alexander Etkind shows why mourning is more conducive to cultural analysis.  Where trauma is unsymbolized and melancholia is contained […]

Read the full article →

Derek SayerPrague, Capital of the Twentieth Century: A Surrealist History

July 24, 2015

Prague, according to Derek Sayer, is the place "in which modernist dreams have time and again unraveled." In this sweeping history of surrealism centered on Prague as both a physical location and the "magic capital" in the imagination of leading surrealists such as André Breton and Paul Éluard, Sayer takes the reader on a thematic […]

Read the full article →

Carlos RojasHomesickness: Culture, Contagion, and National Transformation in Modern China

July 8, 2015

Carlos Rojas's new book is a wonderfully transdisciplinary exploration of discourses of sickness and disease in Chinese literature and cinema in the long twentieth century. As its title indicates, Homesickness: Culture, Contagion, and National Transformation in Modern China (Harvard University Press, 2015) focuses particularly on what Rojas calls "homesickness," a condition wherein "a node of […]

Read the full article →

Nick SousanisUnflattening

June 12, 2015

Nick Sousanis's new book is a must-read for anyone interested in thinking or teaching about the relationships between text, image, visuality, and knowledge. Unflattening (Harvard University Press, 2015) uses the medium of comics to explore "flatness of sight" and help readers think and work beyond it by opening up new perceptive possibilities. It proposes that […]

Read the full article →

Greg BarnhiselCold War Modernists: Art, Literature, and American Cultural Diplomacy

June 2, 2015

Greg Barnhisel's new book, Cold War Modernists: Art, Literature, and American Cultural Diplomacy (Columbia UP, 2015) examines how modernism was defanged, re-packaged, and resold during the Cold War. Barnhisel, an Associate Professor at Duquesne University, reveals that–from its incendiary beginnings–modernism was made safe for the bourgeois West thanks to the intervention of unlikely contributors like […]

Read the full article →

Paul K. Saint-AmourTense Future: Modernism, Total War, Encyclopedic Form

May 6, 2015

Paul K. Saint-Amour, Associate Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, is a ruminative thinker and meticulous writer. These traits pay dividends in the surprising insights of his new book, Tense Future: Modernism, Total War, Encyclopedic Form (Oxford University Press, 2015), which reframes total war and literature in the interwar years and in the […]

Read the full article →

Eva IllouzHard-Core Romance: Fifty Shades of Grey, Best-Sellers, and Society

April 27, 2015

Eva Illouz is professor of sociology at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and president of the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her book Hard-Core Romance: Fifty Shades of Grey, Best Sellers, and Society (University of Chicago Press, 2014), provides a feminist-sociological analysis of the soft pornographic novel Fifty Shades of Grey. The book, and its two […]

Read the full article →

Andrew CaytonLove in the Time of Revolution: Transatlantic Literary Radicalism and Historical Change, 1793-1818

April 21, 2015

Andrew Cayton is a distinguished professor of history at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. In his book Love in the Time of Revolution: Transatlantic Literary Radicalism and Historical Change (University of North Carolina Press, 2013) he has given us a lucid and beautifully written history of the transatlantic relationships among the circle of radical writers […]

Read the full article →