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Jenne’ R. Andrews, 2016

Bio

Jenne’ R. Andrews is an American lyric poet; her poetry is noted for its rich musicality,   brilliance and luminosity of imagery, and unabashed emotional risks. Autumn House founder Michael Simms considers her work significant for the strength of its voice and mastery of craft.

The poet’s work has appeared in literary journals since ’69; to date she has had five collections published. Early mentors include Robert Bly, Canadian poet Tom Wayman, former Colorado Poet Laureate Mary Crow, master poet Bill Tremblay, Pulitzer Prize winner Maxine Kumin, memoirist Patricia Hampl, and other luminaries of her generation.

Andrews’ early collections of poetry include In Pursuit of the Family, edited and published by Robert Bly and the Minnesota Writers’ Publishing House and Reunion, Lynx House Press, Christopher Howell, Publisher.  Before ever completing a B.A.,  she was four-year, full-time Poet in Residence to the St. Paul Schools, and won both a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Literature and a Minnesota State Arts Board grant.

An expanded chapbook from Finishing Line Press, Blackbirds Dance in the Empire of Love, appeared in 2013, receiving high praise by her contemporaries and a lauding letter from Mr. Bly.   Copies of this book are available from Finishing Line; signed copies are available from the poet via jenneandrews2010@gmail.com.

Forthcoming Publication as of February 2017

In 2017 the poet published Bocca, Voce, Delirio, Poems of Italia and Amore to its own blog, where it stands as companion to her memoir Nightfall in Verona.  

In 2018 or 2019, of especial interest and great meaning to the poet,  her  second book length collection of poetry, And Now, the Road, will be published by the preeminent  international house Salmon Poetry Ltd, Knockeven, the Cliffs of Moher, County Clare, Ireland, Jessie Lendennie, Editor and Publisher.   The collection was also a finalist for the 2014 Autumn House Poetry Prize.  

Roots, Travel and Passions

Andrews’ poetry is imbued with a strong sense of place, including her native New Mexico, Colorado and Minnesota.

In 1974, invited by friend and fellow poet Caroline Marshall, the poet traveled to Italy, ultimately taking a train alone down the coast to Reggio Calabria to rendezvous with a Calabrese she met in Verona.  She became fluent in Italian, and has a great affinity for southern Italy and Sicily.

Returning to Colorado from Minnesota in 1978, the poet completed her bachelor’s degree and went on to take both M.A. and MFA degrees at Colorado State University.  She has taught composition, literature and creative writing at CSU and The University of Colorado.

After twenty years of raising Golden Retrievers in Colorado, continuing to write on the fly but during an intentional break from US Arts and Letters, the poet lost most of her mobility in a fall from a horse in 2007.  She has since devoted herself to a full time writing life, becoming a proficient political blogger,  and posting reviews of new collections of poetry to this blog.

Andrews’ passions include loving and breeding English Cream Golden Retrievers, creating exquisite collectible baby dolls, civil rights advocacy and lately, blogging about politics in the regressive wormhole of the Trump presidency.  She lives with her husband, fiction writer Jack Brooks, and dogs Angelo, Paris, Malibu and Scherzo on six acres on the county line in northern Colorado.

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This blog has been a work in progress since early 2010. Nearly 130,000 overall views and counting. Here is a wonderful compliment from a friend and blog follower: “Your creative gifts, your activism, and your sharp intellect make this world a better, more transparent, more honest, beautiful place.”

You can read much more about me  here. Contact me at jenneandrews2010@gmail.com; I am on Facebook at Jenne R Andrews, and Twitter as jenandrewspoet.

Please do not share any of the poetry and nonfiction on this blog in whole or in part without crediting Jenne’ R. Andrews as author and linking back to this blog–you can also share a post on Facebook or follow the blog via widgets on the right sidebar–thanks.

Trump in Liar-Land: The Arizona Rally

It may seem foolhardy to keep writing blog posts about 45 i.e. our 45th “President.” But to me it is important not to leave it all to the press.  In a democratic country, just as every vote counts, so should every voice.  There cannot be too many analyses of this man and  his verbiage and how he is the consummate chameleon, projecting to his so-called base–the meth-head cockroaches who come out of the hills and in from shacks in the desert to swell the crowd.

For whatever reason I seem to be the lone blogger among my Facebook friends–all 800 of them– peers who run the gamut from poet-intellectuals at the forefront of American arts and letters, to a number of Sicilian writers/thinkers for whom I have the upmost respect for tenacity in word and deed against the Mafiosi who have dwindled to the vestigal tail of the country, to a plethora of canine “fanciers”, serious people with a depth of passion for the Golden Retriever all over the world.  .

I mainly want to weigh in on Trump’s performance tonight before however many people were gathered in the auditorium in Phoenix and correct a few things.  There was not a small crowd of protesters at this rally; there were thousands. Quoting himself tonight, Trump engaged in multiple sins of omission; he has never taken back his false equivalency re the Virginia tragedies, of those protesting the Alt-Right’s disgusting demonstration around the monument to Robert E. Lee, i.e. torch-bearing, sieg heiling and KKK-hood wearing fools well-aware of their impact upon those who oppose what they say and who they are and who have no place anywhere near the academy, which espouses the free exchange of ideas and the honing of the intellect in civility.  Few, it must be noted, are speaking openly  about Antifa, who showed up in Charleston to defend peaceful protesters, clad in black and wearing face masks, espousing sterm unt drang, turning right wing mass ire to their direction.

Trump is a master liar and a charlatan. He has contempt for truth and for a media devoted to it.  He presents “alternative facts,” wearing delusion as readily as changing ties,  alleging that he said what he didn’t say and not manifesting any remorse for the multiplicity of the things he has said.

In this fake President, who struggles to seem and be anything close to presidential, is a damaged, sick man who gets off on backlash to the extent that he invites it.

The most dangerous thing about him is that he is a master of disguise, being unto his crazy base, who they want him to be, the day after he seemed “presidential” to  Republicans when he spoke to issues regarding Afghanistan and our sixteen-year long war there.

He buffaloed a lot of people with his electoral victory amounting to under 100,000 actual votes he called a landslide.  What in fact does it say about him that he wanted a military parade at the inauguration, that one of his first actions was to institute a cruel and   unnecessary travel ban, that he obsesses on erecting a border wall against “Mexican criminals,” ,seeming more xenophobic than protectionist in closing down sanctuary cities, determining that the 3 million margin in the popular vote of Hillary Clinton was a massive case  of voter fraud–that he demanded a national voter registry to include people’s voting histories and social security cards, that he lifted the ban on sale of assault rifles and other guns to the mentally ill, basically putting high-powered war-grade weapons back in the hands of 2nd amendment wack-jobs but especially, that he periodically gins up rage and hate at his rallies, to the extent that people like David Duke assert that the Alt Right is “taking our country back.”  Further, that he denies climate change and took the US out of the Paris Climate Accord, ordered “trans-sexuals out of military service  and has, enthroned somewhere with his smart phone, engaged in daily foolhardy tweeting never getting it that push-back and feedback all reveal that someone utterly unstable and out of control carries the case with the red button in it, ever more deeply indicating that he should do us all a favor and resign.

Trump has demonstrated a complete inability to see his own part in generating negative press.  That he has inflamed and infuriated North Korea, putting millions of people in harm’s way.  One minute he’s against nation-building and the next, sending more troops into Kabul.  No wonder we all have whiplash.

Every clear-minded, literate person is in anguish over the hegemony and power grabs of this faux president who seems to have put a spell on the Republican Congress, who only needs to invoke Clause IV of the 25th Amendment to set in motion a series of events that will humanely send this man out of office.   But Trump is a man far gone, going down, to whom only a handful now keep handing a life preserver.  Even his own Chief of Staff, a General, can’t stop him from dancing on a cliff’s edge above deep and roiling waters.

We must let him drown.