MTPR

Sarah Aronson

Sarah Aronson is the host and producer of "The Write Question" on Montana Public Radio.

BkMk Press

"I think my voice. . .comes partly at least from things I’ve been told not to do in poetry. I feel like forever, throughout my life as a poet, I’m the type of person who if you tell me not to do something I will find a way to do it. But I’ll want to do it well so I can prove that the person who told me not to do it was wrong." --Henrietta Goodman

"People love to tell their stories. I was really amazed by the optimism of people in Montana despite some of these towns were—some of the county seats, especially in eastern Montana were in pretty bad shape. It just blew my mind how people were still clinging to the idea that things will eventually turn around. I guess the biggest surprise was how. . . it takes a lot to kill the spirit of this place." -- Russell Rowland

"A lot of people would say a landscape is indifferent, or nature’s indifferent. A lot of people get the feeling that Southeast Alaska, the Inside Passage, if you get in it, if you get off that cruise ship—which is how most visitors see it—it’s menacing. It’s not just that it doesn’t care about you, it wants to eat you." -- Bjorn Dihle on the Inside Passage.

In The Trail to Tincup: Love Stories at Life’s End, a psychologist reckons with the loss of four family members within a span of two years. Hocker works backward into the lives of these people and forward into the values, perspective, and qualities they bestowed before and after leaving. Following the trail to their common gravesite in Tincup, Colorado, she remembers and recounts decisive stories and delves into artifacts, journals, and her own dreams. In the process the grip of grief begins to lessen, death braids its way into life, and life informs the losses with abiding connections. Gradually, she begins to find herself capable of imagining life without her sister and best friend. Toward the end of the book Hocker’s own near-death experience illuminates how familiarity with her individual mortality helps her live with joy, confidence, and openness.

Zan Bockes

For the Lost

 

You’ve been turning right

at every corner; the sooty night

 

tangles your hair.  If the moon were out

you’d be making wishes, but doubt

 

strings lines across your eyes,

makes neon signs a disguise

 

for gold.  The wind is so cold it cuts

like dry ice wires, struts

 

and whips the newspapers down

the street in rolling stampede.  You drown

 

your teeth in Old Crow, bite

the sorrow on your tongue in two, tight

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