American Happiness

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NewSouth Books, Sep 28, 2016 - Poetry - 80 pages
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American Happiness is an eclectic collection of verse from a bold poet of everyday life, Jacqueline Allen Trimble. Ironically titled, the work addresses everything from the death of parents to racial tension to the encroachment of coyotes into urban spaces.

The title is taken from a poem in the book which considers the kinder, gentler exploits of Sheriff Andy and Deputy Barney during a time when Southern law enforcement was neither universally kind or gentle. Says Trimble, “Barney had one bullet/and no need for a rope./The only burning he did was for his Thelma Lou.”

On her poetic journey, which takes us from the personal to the political, Trimble probes our racial divide. She is by turns compassionate and fierce, cutting at our hypocrisy with the knife of her words and willing us toward our better common humanity.
 

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Contents

How my mother Taught me to Write poems
9
everybody in America Hate the south
15
The relativity of midlife
22
Things That Are Lost
29
A conjugation
36
The geography of passion
42
The retort i Wish i Had made After i Forgot to pack
46
A Woman Tells the History of Her people
52
American Happiness
58
Another Thing to Worry About
64
gun collector shoots Unarmed Black
70
index of poem Titles
77
Copyright

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About the author (2016)

Jacqueline Allen Trimble lives and writes in Montgomery, Alabama, where she is an associate professor of English and chairperson of Languages and Literatures at Alabama State University. Her work has appeared in various online and print publications including The Griot, The Offing, and The Blue Lake Review. She is currently a Cave Canem fellow and the recipient of a 2017 literary arts fellowship from the Alabama State Council on the Arts.

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