Labor Day 2012 & My Father

My father, Sam Ross, believed passionately in organized labor. He knew, from his own experience, how crucial it was for workers to organize themselves into unions. He knew the power  which organized workers could bring to a workplace– whether that power was used to protect themselves from unsafe working conditions or whether that power wasContinue reading “Labor Day 2012 & My Father”

Edwidge Danticat’s “Create Dangerously” is a Gentle Manifesto for Artists

Edwidge Danticat, is among the best fiction and non-fiction writers of English these days. Her novels about life in Haiti (Krik Krak, Breath, Eyes, Memory, and The Farming of Bones) create vivid stories of sympathetic characters undergoing remarkable sufferings. Her talent as a storyteller is wide and rich. More recently, she’s been writing non-fiction. Her 2010Continue reading “Edwidge Danticat’s “Create Dangerously” is a Gentle Manifesto for Artists”

The Opposites of August

August is my favorite month. It always has been. I love August because it is the month, in the northern hemisphere, when one can feel summer in its full, unrestrained power. August means sunshine. August means rich, full, green trees. August means short pants and bare feet. August means the beach. August means swimming. WhenContinue reading “The Opposites of August”

“Voices of Haiti” — Our Common Humanity

I have never seen a more stirring and crafted fusion of poetry, photography, and music, than in “Voices of Haiti: A Post-Quake Odyssey in Verse.” Poet Kwame Dawes, composer and poet Kevin Simmonds, singer Valetta Brinson, and photographer Andre Lambertson combined their significant collective talents to create a masterpiece. “Voices of Haiti” gives voice to HIV-positiveContinue reading ““Voices of Haiti” — Our Common Humanity”

Remembering My Father: Sam Ross 1918-2012

It’s hard to find photographs of my dad by himself. That alone, speaks volumes about the man he was and the life he lived. This photograph, taken at a little restaurant in Ramona, California, near San Diego, captures his generous spirit: his smile, his joy at being with one of his granddaughters, his good humorContinue reading “Remembering My Father: Sam Ross 1918-2012”

Pratt Library Displays “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God”

As part of their National Poetry Month Celebration, the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland is displaying my poem “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God” in one of their large windows facing Cathedral Street. I’m humbled that they selected this poem to win their poetry contest, run in conjunction with the literaryContinue reading “Pratt Library Displays “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God””