Talking in the Dark: A Poetry Memoir

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PUSH/Scholastic Incorporated, 2003 - Juvenile Nonfiction - 136 pages
12 Reviews
PUSH continues to break new ground with this remarkable poetry memoir of growing up, coming out, and exploring love.

This is a memoir that is lived in moments. The moments you know - when you see your parents' marriage dissolving, when you realize you're a boy who likes boys, when you speak the truth and don't know if it will be heard. The moments you don't recognize until later - when you leave things unsaid (even to yourself), when you feel your boyfriend letting go, when you give up on love. And the moment you get love back.
In an amazing narrative of poems, Billy Merrell tells an ordinary story in an extraordinary way.

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Review: Talking In The Dark : A Poetry Memoir

User Review  - Gail - Goodreads

Though not related to the goal of the wide reading project, I plan to use some of the poems from this text for the speech team! Verse that reads like prose is great for students who are skeptical of ... Read full review

Review: Talking In The Dark : A Poetry Memoir

User Review  - Lauren - Goodreads

These poems speak to the reader on an intimate level, and allow those burdened by the fear of being who they are to gain a sense of courage. I love this book! Read full review

About the author (2003)

At 22, Billy Merrell is the youngest author to date published by the Push Imprint of Scholastic Inc. Merrell, who grew up in Jacksonville Florida, began writing poetry around eighth grade. He had a better grasp of rhyme and meter than the other students in his classes, and as a result, the teacher began giving him more challenging poetry assignments rather than less expressive work. It wasn’t until his sophomore year of high school that Merrell began to write about his own feelings, and recognized writing poetry as a liberating activity.

Merrell is recent graduate of the University of Florida with a B.A. in English. During the summer, earlier in his college career, Merrell was hired as the first PUSH Writing Intern. During this summer internship, Merrell came to New York City and began work on his first book. The culmination of his work with PUSH is talking in the dark, a memoir composed of poetry that documents a story of growing up, coming out and exploring love. As a gay man himself, Merrell sought to write a book that he felt could have been of use to him as a teenage boy coming out. It is “an affecting memoir told in verse, this work launches a promising young poet….[Merrell’s] sophisticated verse and compelling story will capture attention as it stirs compassion.” —School Library Journal

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