For the Mississippi Review‘s Public Scrutiny, which publishes opinions of 350 words, Gary Percesepe laments the loss of a quarter million jobs in Ohio and finds hope in the words of Mary Karr (The Liar’s Club):
Last week while reading a magazine I saw a poem that laid me out; just knocked me sideways. The poetâ€™s name was Mary Karr. Maybe you know her; I didnâ€™t. I do now. She did a memoir that some people talked wildly about, then another. Some poetry collections, too. Her teenaged face looks out from the cover of one of her books; a strand of brown hair is escaping her head, leaving a wedge of white skin, and gleaming teeth. Her head is cocked sideways. She is smiling. She is older now, of course. We are the same age.
I seem to be testing the idea that one can live from art, claw back fragments from the ruins of the shipwreck of landlocked spaces, places like Ohio. Or east Texas, from where Mary Karr escaped. Texas women have always intrigued me. To clarify: Women of a certain age who quote the maenadsâ€™ sad lament from The Bacchae,
Will they come to me ever again,
the long, long dances?….