This is an entertaining account of the world that local birds inhabit as well as the unique breed of Homo sapiens that chooses to spend its free time chasing down and identifying birds. –John Hanson, author of Ceremonial Time
From the publisher: In Flight Calls, John Nelson takes readers on explorations to watch, hear, and know Massachusetts’s hummingbirds, hawks, and herons along the coasts and in the woodlands, meadows, and marshes of Cape Ann, Cape Cod, the Great Marsh, Mount Auburn Cemetery, the Quabbin wilderness, Mount Wachusett, and elsewhere. With style, humor, and a sense of wonder, Nelson blends his field adventures with a history of the birding community; natural and cultural history; bird stories from authors such as Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson, and Mary Oliver; current scientific research; and observations about the fascinating habits of birds and their admirers. These essays are capped off with a plea for bird conservation, in Massachusetts and beyond.
John Nelson is professor emeritus at North Shore Community College. His essay “Funny Bird Sex” was awarded a 2018 Pushcart Prize. A chapter in Flight Calls was adapted from his essay “Mr. Forbush and Mr. White,” which appeared in NER 35.2.
Flight Calls can be purchased from University of Massachusetts Press. NER readers can save 30% with code S735! Order online or call 800-537-5487.
As a fiction writer, essayist, and poet, Huddle has an impressive body of work, but it is his poetry that sustains his vision. –Bloomsbury Review
From the publisher: In My Surly Heart, the prolific poet and novelist David Huddle reflects on turning seventy-six years of age and records his aghast reactions to changes brought about by the current president of the United States. Huddle avoids the pitfalls of speechifying, pseudo-philosophizing, or indulging in unmitigated complaint. Instead, he embraces the potential of poetry to use intelligence, wit, language, knowledge, and sense of form to move toward useful revelations. Throughout this idiosyncratic collection of verse, Huddle deploys poem making as a method for psychologically and spiritually navigating from his past to his present life and on into whatever his future may hold. These poems traverse childhood memories, birding adventures, musical reveries, the role of art, and many points in between. My Surly Heart shows a celebrated poet confronting the challenges of age and country with wry humor and unsparing honesty.
David Huddle teaches at the Bread Loaf School of English and the Rainier Writing Workshop. He is the author of over twenty novels, short-story collections and volumes of poetry. Huddle served as Acting Editor of the New England Review from 1993 to 1995 and as Contributing Editor in 1988. Read his stories “Poison Oak,” published in NER 1.3, and “Scotland,” from NER 13.2.
My Surly Heart can be purchased from LSU Press or your local bookseller.