Friday, April 5, 2019

Evicted by Matthew Desmond

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

This book is really good and it explains so much about Evictions and why they are happening at an alarming rate to our cities poor population. My brother and his girlfriend are being evicted in one month (they are evicting the whole building full of low-income residents who suffer from addiction and mental and physical disabilities to do repairs) He has lived there for over 10 years and has built a family with the other long term residents and they help and care for each other. His girlfriend has attempted suicide twice since learning of their eviction and potential homelessness and feels she needs to put down her cats since they won't be able to live on the street with her. It's heartbreaking. It's very difficult to find affordable housing in the Twin Cities area. Being evicted creates a lot of stress. Even I'm feeling the effects of the upcoming eviction and I'm not being evicted. It's so hard. This is an issue we need to create solutions for. As a teacher, I see some of my students struggling with eviction and homelessness and this changes their perceptions of worth. Read this book and educate yourself about this issue. It's so important to lower the rate of evictions in our cities, that it needs to happen NOW.

“Every condition exists,” Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote, “simply because someone profits by its existence. This economic exploitation is crystallized in the slum.” Exploitation. Now, there’s a word that has been scrubbed out of the poverty debate.”

“it is hard to argue that housing is not a fundamental human need. Decent, affordable housing should be a basic right for everybody in this country. The reason is simple: without stable shelter, everything else falls apart.”

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Guess what? I Published a Book!

              Guess what?  I Published a Book!

My book is a poetry anthology that I co-edited with my friend Annette Gagliardi. Its called Upon Waking. 58 Voices Speaking Out from the Shadow of Abuse.  I have five of my poems in the book and I tell my story of abuse and healing through my poetry. 

Our book launch is on Saturday, April 6th at 2pm at Moon Palace books in Minneapolis. It's all very exciting and full of awesome.  If you live in the Twin Cities area you should come.

So I have been missing from my blog for a while now and I've been meaning to start blogging again. In fact, I made an attempt in December 2018 but then I fell backward on the ice, while walking a dog, and broke both my wrists so that idea fell by the wayside. Yes, envision me with two casts on each wrist and then imagine trying to wash your hair. It was not very fun or pretty. I'm still healing but my casts are off and I can type and write again.

What have I been doing since I quit blogging in 2017?

I actually quit blogging due to grief.  My dog died unexpectedly in May of 2017 (he was my baby) and I just couldn't write.  Grief does that to me, it stops me from writing every time. When I finally started writing again I focused on my poetry and fiction writing and kind of kicked my blog to the curb. No, I actually did kick my blog to the curb for real.  It's hard to do it all and to do it well. Hard to be a parent, high school teacher, reader, writer, book blogger, healthy, mindful, and so something had to give. 

I started working on my book with Annette in October 2017 and 18 months later here we are at the promotion and event stage.  It has been an amazing experience and I have learned so much. Its also been an emotional experience and a healing one too. 

Our book is made up of poetry by survivors of abuse, sexual and physical, and it gives survivors a chance to tell their stories through poetry. It is a very powerful book.

Here is the link to add it to your Goodreads TBR list:

You can buy a copy from the League of Minnesota Poets:

You can also find copies at Independent Bookstores in St. Paul and Minneapolis, MN

Moon Palace 

You can also call or visit these locations to get a copy.

Subtext Books
BoneShaker Books
Eat my Words! Bookstore