Boomer girls: poems by women from the baby boom generation

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Pamela Gemin, Paula Sergi
University of Iowa Press, 1999 - Poetry - 236 pages
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Where you between Betty Crocker and Gloria Steinem? With that question in mind poets Pamela Gemin and Paula Sergi began collecting the poems in Boomer Girls, an anthology of coming-of-age poems written by women born between 1945 and 1964, give or take a few years on either side. The answers to that question till this volume with the energy, passion, heartbreak, and giddiness of women's lives from childhood to adolescence to middle age.

The poems in Boomer Girls are by unknown, emerging, and established writers, women who participated in the second wave of feminism. From Sandra Cisneros' "My Wicked Wicked Ways" to Barbara Crooker's "Nearing Menopause, I Run into Elvis at Shoprite, " from Wendy Mnookin's "Polio Summer" to Kyoko Mori's "Barbie Says Math Is Hard, " these poems call for us to celebrate (in the words of poet Diane Seuss-Brakeman) "glances, romances, beauty and guilt, regret, remorse, rebates and rejuvenations."

Boomer Girls share a common culture, bound by their generation's political history by pop icons like Barbie -- that pedestaled Boomer Girl who's just turned forty -- and by the music that's never stopped playing: Janis Joplin, Marvin Gaye, Jimi Hendrix, the Ronettes, Van Morrison, Patsy Cline, John Lennon. The Boomer poets in this feisty anthology speak with diverse voices and embody a wide range of experiences, yet their generation's universal images -- the hula hoops, TV shows, tinned auto-mobiles, and other household gods of their youth -- unite them in ways both hilarious and tender.

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About the author (1999)

Pamela Gemin is a graduate of Vermont College's MFA in Writing Program, she is an assistant professor of creative writing at the University of Wisconsin--Oshkosh.

Paula Sergi, BSN, MFA, was selected by the Hessen Literary Society as the Wisconsin writer to act as the 2005 Cultural Ambassador for the Hessen-Wisconsin Writers Exchange. She is the author of "Family Business", a collection of poems, and she co-edited "Boomer Girls: Poems by Women from the Baby Boom Generation", University of Iowa Press, 1999. Sergi received a Wisconsin Arts Board Artist Fellowship in 2001. Her poetry is published regularly in such journals as "The Bellevue Literary Review", "Primavera, Crab Orchard Review", and "Spoon River Poetry Review" and her writing has been featured recently in the "American Journal of Nursing." She worked as a staff nurse at University of Wisconsin Hospitals, as a public health nurse with various county departments, and as a visiting nurse in Portland, Oregon. Now she focuses her time as a teacher and writer. She teaches creative writing at Ripon College, and lives in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.

Geraldine Gorman, RN, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the College of Nursing at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She holds an M.A. in English Literature and a Ph.D. in Nursing, both from Loyola University, Chicago. Before coming to UIC in 2002, she taught at Western Michigan University. Prior to entering the nursing profession in 1991, she taught writing as a teaching assistant at Loyola University. She also worked in direct social services, living in community at the Little Brothers of the Poor and participating in all aspects of their service to low-income elderly, including meal delivery, relocation services, and holiday and vacation celebrations. In this capacity she also facilitated poetry workshops in nursing homes, resulting in two small anthologies of collected work. She was a founding member of a small grass roots organization in Tempe, AZ, which served the needs of the many relocated elderly and she organized the local university community to provide, among other services, respite care for the spouses of Alzheimer victims. Before beginning nursing school, Gerry served as the volunteer coordinator and editorial assistant to H.O.M.E, a nonprofit housing organization for Chicago's low-income elderly.

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