Boomer Girls: Write Women Pen Poetry Book
Professor David Demko, PhD
AgeVenture News Service
Someone's finally penned a book of poetry that taps the pulse of today's American women. "Boomer Girls: poems by women" is a veritable cavalcade of poetic energy, passion, heartbreak, and giddiness on the theme of women's lives from childhood to adolescence to middle age. "As the younger brother of six older sisters, I found "Boomer Girls" a delightful walk down memory lane. These insightful reflections on nearly every aspect of life are presented with warmth, optimism, and dignity. An absolutely delicious read."
Where were 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 fill this volume.
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, finned auto-mobiles, and other household gods of their youth--unite them in ways both hilarious and tender.
Pamela Gemin teaches composition, literature, and creative writing at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. Her first book of poems, Vendettas, Charms, and Prayers, was a Minnesota Voices Project winner and is forthcoming from New Rivers Press. The author of two poetry collections, Brother and Phantom Limb, fellow Boomer Girl Paula Sergi teaches creative writing at the Arts Center of Fond du Lac.
"Boomer Girls" (1999) 242 pages, $15.95 paper, University of Iowa Press. In bookstores this October. Also available at the University of Iowa Press website at: www.uiowa.edu/~uipress
Graphic Credit: University of Iowa Press, Iowa City, Iowa.
AgeVenture News Service, www.demko.com
David Demko reports on lifestyle issues and trends in Aging America.