• White Facebook Icon
xxpaulmartin12345x
Dec 4, 2017

The Bone Bridge

0 comments

Edited: Dec 31, 2017

 

· The Bone Bridge by Yarrott Benz. (ff). Anne Boster recommended this book to me saying, “You know, Marge, he can write.” I knew Yarrott as a colleague, but I didn’t really know him at all until I read this book. As a young teen in Kentucky, Yarrott is the only person who can save the life of his brother Charley, who requires transfusions from a perfect match. The story of the young man Yarrott was, so at odds with the conservative Kentucky environment he grew up in, is further complicated by his surrender of freedom for a brother with whom he shares little more than a similar blood type. Yarrott shows who he is on such an intimate level that he inspired me to try my own hand at memoir writing. (Thank you, Yarrott.)

 

New Posts
  • xxpaulmartin12345x
    May 6

    Not That Kind of a Girl, A young woman tells you what she has “learned” by Lena Dunham, attended lower school. I really enjoyed Lena Dunham’s series Girls, and was intrigued to hear that she had attended Friends. So, she’s “not that kind of girl.” In my day that was what we said to put off unwanted amorous advances. What could it mean after the sexual revolution? In Lena’s case I can’t imagine, but I’m not sure she’s any kind of a girl; to me, her original voice is sui generis . At first I thought she had taken on the pose of a fausse naïve, who faked the surprise of a newborn as she faced all of life’s little adventures. After reading this book, I see her more as a curious and troubled spirit who is generous enough to put into words her experiences, stripped of any prepackaged filmy overlay. What I though was a pose is the real thing. She tells her story more thematically than chronologically (love and sex, body, friends, work), but it all leads to a sweeping feminist vision: “And the goal is big: radical self-acceptance for woman everywhere, political change so total it shakes the ground, justice and joy for those who have been used and tossed aside. And the goal is small: utter and unbridled selfhood.” As my daughter would say, “You go, girl!”
  • xxpaulmartin12345x
    Mar 15

    My Mother and Me, Making it in New York After Making it Out of Berlin and Beirut by Peter Schrag ’55. This charming memoir saves a great deal of information about the life of Ilse Schrag from falling into oblivion and preserves a record of her struggles to make a life for herself and her son, the author, in New York, when Germany became too dangerous for their survival. She and the father of her child ended their short relationship in Beirut; she eventually linked up with the artist Karl Schrag, who adopted young Peter. The intensity of the mother-son relationship was a mixed blessing. Peter has to face the challenge of asserting his own identity and making his own choices. Many of the remembrances are funny and reveal Ilse’s strengths and weaknesses, one in the same since she was quite overbearing. Peter was admitted to Friends Seminary back when Mr. Prinz was the principal. Ilse is convinced that her hat was the key element in the admission’s process. Mr. Prinz liked that hat, and Peter got in. (Times have changed). Peter is haunted by his desire to know his biological father; the closest he comes to condemning his mother is on this subject. He does his own research and does meet his father, who ended up in Australia. The book is chock full of details; I can only imagine how valuable it will prove to Ilse’s grandchildren.
  • xxpaulmartin12345x
    Jan 12

    Body in Space, My Life with Tammy by Margaret Gonzalez te. So here is my own book with Tammy on the cover. If you were in the lower school in the years from 1984-1988, you might remember her. I got Tammy from the foster care system when she was five. Elsewhere on this site you can find more about this book. One thing that was driven home to me from raising Tammy is how much society suffers when we don’t address children’s needs in a timely fashion.