Thursday, July 19, 2007

"Looking Back" Anthology just released by the publisher.

A Kay Kennedy fan, I was honored when she chose some of my work to include in her new anthology "Looking Back- 1940-2005 History as seen through the eyes of those who lived it."

The book has just been released! You can read an excerpt and order the book at

I've read Looking Back and this book is rich with experiences lived by and chronicled in prose and poetry in Kay's new book.

When I was in high school and college the American history classes were stale and boring and involved a memorization and regurgitation of dates that coincided with events that had no life! I never quite understood how the professors could be excited about history! As chalk flew everywhere and teachers eyes shone and bodies became animated while recounting events of the past, I wondered "what was I missing?" Why didn't my imagination catch fire like theirs did; why did I feel I had to drag myself to class daily to listen to someone drone on and on about events that had no humanity, no connection, no magic?

World history managed to pique my interest with its fascinating cultural traditions, beliefs and diversity. How the world had unfolded, how humanity had developed, now that was exciting! I especially resonated with anything about ancient Egypt; I still do. In college and in seminary, world history and events were viewed through the eyes of human philosophy and myth. Now that made history come alive.

If only Kay's kind of book had been available back in high school... To re-live events through the eyes of someone actually living them in real time lends a rich mixture of energy, philosophy and myth-- it brings history alive. Wish someone had tried that methodology before.

I caught the excitement in what Kay was proposing and I submitted a few things having lived through some history that changed the world and the future and introduced the concept of peace as not just a way to feel, but a way to live upon the planet.

1 comment:

Lisa Marie said...

I am very much looking forward to receiving a copy of this book. Thank you! It looks excellent!
Lisa Marie

A few Thoughts...

When I think about it, my own life is no less rich and the living no less inspiring than my pioneering ancestors and I come from a long line of Indians and outlaws so don't ever turn your back on me!

Life is, after all, a slice of human consciousness lived from its place in human evolution. "From here to eternity" as it were-- from earth to the stars, from personal space to cyberspace, from a small local footprint to the world reduced to the size of a notebook and sitting on your lap!

As a child I lived with the perpetual and immenent threat of annihilation. That's child abuse! It wasn't a kid-friendly world and I couldn't understand why the grown-ups who were in charge weren't doing something?

So at age seven with my face in the window eyes turned up into the night sky and staring at the stars I made a vow: "When I am a grown-up, I will do something."

My writing is that something and I write to "simply change the world." If that sounds like a lack of humility it isn't because I know that one person absolutely can change the world and I've met some who have.

Kay Kennedy put together an anthology that puts the reader in the midst of history to view it from the inside out.

When I was in high school and even college, history classes were stale and boring featuring memorization and regurgitation of dates that coincided with events that had no human face, certainly no magic, and no life!

Anthologies are great fun and stores are rich remembrances. History books chronicle; stories are little narrative slices of living. History comes alive through story. I often think of my grandmother and her story, her life-- the history she lived. In her lifetime she saw humankind evolve from horse and buggy to man on the moon.

I was a sixties kid and for the youth of the sixties, turmoil, disillusionment, and revolution were everyday 'business as usual'. Like a radio perpetually on low volume, fear and death dronned on in the background. The superpowers threatened to extinguish all life on the planet, the Vietnam War was escalating and peers were being escorted home under American Flag blankets. The civil rights and equal rights movements were testing human civility, and faster than one could recover from one shock another real life hero would fall to yet another assassin. Despair was commonplace. Contrast that with a man on the moon... we could conquer space travel but couldn't make nukes or war obsolete! It was a time when youth needed hope because hope was scarce. When it was finally resurrected, it came in the form of idealism and a philosophy of brotherly and universal love. Perfect principles; imperfect execution.

For others who contributed to "Looking Back," the history is different for each because the "times" were different as well as the perspective of the individuals. The stories of human societal evolution are enlightening, heartwarming, poignant and spellbinding. They put a human face on the past.

And there are people now who are putting a face on the future...