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Original Essays | September 15, 2014

Lois Leveen: IMG Forsooth Me Not: Shakespeare, Juliet, Her Nurse, and a Novel



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October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard

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October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

WINNER OF A 2013 STONEWALL HONOR!

A masterful poetic exploration of the impact of Matthew Shepard’s murder on the world.

On the night of October 6, 1998, a gay twenty-one-year-old college student named Matthew Shepard was lured from a Wyoming bar by two young men, savagely beaten, tied to a remote fence, and left to die. Gay Awareness Week was beginning at the University of Wyoming, and the keynote speaker was Lesléa Newman, discussing her book Heather Has Two Mommies. Shaken, the author addressed the large audience that gathered, but she remained haunted by Matthew’s murder. October Mourning, a novel in verse, is her deeply felt response to the events of that tragic day. Using her poetic imagination, the author creates fictitious monologues from various points of view, including the fence Matthew was tied to, the stars that watched over him, the deer that kept him company, and Matthew himself. More than a decade later, this stunning cycle of sixty-eight poems serves as an illumination for readers too young to remember, and as a powerful, enduring tribute to Matthew Shepard’s life.

Review:

"Just days after 21-year-old Matthew Shepard was killed in 1998, Newman (Heather Has Two Mommies) visited his school, the University of Wyoming, as the keynote speaker for its Gay Awareness Week. Writing from this personal viewpoint, Newman crafts 68 poems, imagining the perspectives of Shepard, his convicted killers, the stars above, the fence to which he was tied, a nearby deer, and many more. Despite the variety of voices and poetic forms Newman uses (haiku, pantoum, villanelle, and others), the poems read as a somewhat repetitive chorus of rage, shame, and disgust ('I can take anything/ I'm tough as time/ But when I saw him/ between the two of them/ trapped in that truck/ it made me want to heave,' says the road). It's a visceral, painful read, but it's difficult to say how singsongy couplets from Shepard's cat ('Where is the boy? Will he ever be back?/ I'm cold and I'm lonely and I need a snack') or a punny offering from the rope used to bind him ('They roped me in/ I was fit to be tied') make this tragedy more real. Ages 14 — up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

WINNER OF A 2013 STONEWALL HONOR!

A masterful poetic exploration of the impact of Matthew Shepard’s murder on the world.

On the night of October 6, 1998, a gay twenty-one-year-old college student named Matthew Shepard was lured from a Wyoming bar by two young men, savagely beaten, tied to a remote fence, and left to die. Gay Awareness Week was beginning at the University of Wyoming, and the keynote speaker was Lesléa Newman, discussing her book Heather Has Two Mommies. Shaken, the author addressed the large audience that gathered, but she remained haunted by Matthew’s murder. October Mourning, a novel in verse, is her deeply felt response to the events of that tragic day. Using her poetic imagination, the author creates fictitious monologues from various points of view, including the fence Matthew was tied to, the stars that watched over him, the deer that kept him company, and Matthew himself. More than a decade later, this stunning cycle of sixty-eight poems serves as an illumination for readers too young to remember, and as a powerful, enduring tribute to Matthew Shepard’s life.

About the Author

Lesléa Newman is the author of more than sixty books for children and adults, including the groundbreaking childrens classic Heather Has Two Mommies. A former poet laureate of Northampton, Massachusetts, she has received poetry fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Artists Fellowship Foundation. She lives in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780763658076
Author:
Newman, Leslea
Publisher:
Candlewick Press (MA)
Subject:
General
Subject:
Children s-Peace and Justice
Subject:
Children's poetry
Publication Date:
20120931
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
from 9
Language:
English
Pages:
128
Dimensions:
9.2 x 5.4 x 0.53 in 0.6 lb
Age Level:
from 14

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Related Subjects


Children's » Peace and Justice
Children's » Poetry » General
Gay and Lesbian » History and Social Science » History and Biographies
Young Adult » Fiction » Poetry
Young Adult » Fiction » Social Issues » Homosexuality
Young Adult » Fiction » Social Issues » Violence
Young Adult » General
Young Adult » Nonfiction » Teen Issues

October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard New Hardcover
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$15.99 In Stock
Product details 128 pages Candlewick Press (MA) - English 9780763658076 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Just days after 21-year-old Matthew Shepard was killed in 1998, Newman (Heather Has Two Mommies) visited his school, the University of Wyoming, as the keynote speaker for its Gay Awareness Week. Writing from this personal viewpoint, Newman crafts 68 poems, imagining the perspectives of Shepard, his convicted killers, the stars above, the fence to which he was tied, a nearby deer, and many more. Despite the variety of voices and poetic forms Newman uses (haiku, pantoum, villanelle, and others), the poems read as a somewhat repetitive chorus of rage, shame, and disgust ('I can take anything/ I'm tough as time/ But when I saw him/ between the two of them/ trapped in that truck/ it made me want to heave,' says the road). It's a visceral, painful read, but it's difficult to say how singsongy couplets from Shepard's cat ('Where is the boy? Will he ever be back?/ I'm cold and I'm lonely and I need a snack') or a punny offering from the rope used to bind him ('They roped me in/ I was fit to be tied') make this tragedy more real. Ages 14 — up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , WINNER OF A 2013 STONEWALL HONOR!

A masterful poetic exploration of the impact of Matthew Shepard’s murder on the world.

On the night of October 6, 1998, a gay twenty-one-year-old college student named Matthew Shepard was lured from a Wyoming bar by two young men, savagely beaten, tied to a remote fence, and left to die. Gay Awareness Week was beginning at the University of Wyoming, and the keynote speaker was Lesléa Newman, discussing her book Heather Has Two Mommies. Shaken, the author addressed the large audience that gathered, but she remained haunted by Matthew’s murder. October Mourning, a novel in verse, is her deeply felt response to the events of that tragic day. Using her poetic imagination, the author creates fictitious monologues from various points of view, including the fence Matthew was tied to, the stars that watched over him, the deer that kept him company, and Matthew himself. More than a decade later, this stunning cycle of sixty-eight poems serves as an illumination for readers too young to remember, and as a powerful, enduring tribute to Matthew Shepard’s life.

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