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Nancy Simpson's LIVING ABOVE THE FROST LINE, New and Selected Poems was published by Carolina Wren Press (N.C. Laureate Series, 2010.) She is the author of ACROSS WATER and NIGHT STUDENT, State Street Press, still available on WWW at Alibris and Books Again. Her poems have been published in Southern Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, The Georgia Review and other literary magazines. "Carolina Bluebirds" was published in THE POETS GUIDE TO THE BIRDS, Anhinga Press). "Grass" was reprinted in the 50th Anniversary Issue of Southern Poetry Review: DON'T LEAVE HUNGRY ( U.of Arkansas Press.) Seven poems were reprinted in the textbook, SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN POETRY,(McFarland.) Two poems were published in SOLO CAFE, Two more poems were published in SOLO NOVO."In the Nantahala Gorge" was published in Pisgah Review. "Studying Winter" was reprinted in Pirene's Fountain Anthology and "The Collection" in Collecting Life Anthology. Most recently, Southern Poetry Review Edited by James Smith, published "Our Great Depression," and The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. VII: NORTH CAROLINA,Edited by William Wright, reprinted "Leaving in the Dead of Winter."

Monday, March 8, 2010

Ruth Moose -- Poet of the Month of March 2010

Welcome Ruth Moose as POET OF THE MONTH MARCH 2010 here Above the Frost Line. The life and writing of Ruth Moose will be featured in separate posts throughout the month. Stay posted.

If I remember correctly, I first met Ruth Moose at a Winthrop College Writing Conference, in Rock Hill, South Carolina, the weekend of November 11-13, 1982. We had several classes together.

I remember Ruth was tiny and had a tiny voice. The same could have been said of me way back then. We were at the beginning of our writing careers and could hardly make a squeak. We had both come to study with the great ones already leading the way: Susan Ludvigson for one. I remember Editor Stanley W. Lindberg was on the program, talking about the Georgia Review and how to get a poem accepted. When I think of Ruth Moose and recall her beginning as a writer, I remember how quiet her voice, how timid she was. As the years went by, whenever my path crossed with Ruth Moose, always at a writing conference, I was happy to see her. I watched for her poems in magazines and bought her books. I also liked her fiction writing, and I still own both of her short story collections. During her now long career, I find Ruth Moose has become a strong spirit with a rich, deep voice and a gutsy laugh that can be heard across the room.

A few months ago, opening my Christmas cards, I found a gift from Ruth Moose, a copy of a new poetry collection --The Librarian and Other Poems. I read it cover to cover three times. I know enough about Ruth Moose to read a bit between the lines. Dedication pages are fascinating in any book, and of course when I read the dedication page, I felt I had found the key to unlock the poems. The dedication reads These Poems are dedicated to HWLWG HE WHO LEFT WITHOUT GOODBYE.

Take my word. You will want to own this book. You will like the character, the librarian, and will enjoy the this-and-that of her life: “The Librarian Comes Home Late at Night” ,“The Librarian Loves her Bath” , “The Librarian Gets Dressed” , “The

Librarian Buys a Pepper Spray,” just to name a few. of the more than fifty poems in this section. Buy this book. “The Librarian in Athens”, “The Librarian’s Panties”, “The Librarian in Istanbul,” and more.


The Librarian has a cat.
Of course. What did you expect?”
A pit bull? Though her cat, Percy
Has the personality of a pit bull.
Loves to bare his teeth, always
Takes her best
And favorite chair, refuses to move.
Hisses when she approaches.
Yesterday, she beat him to it,
Sat down to a damp and wet
Hairball, dark, fuzzy and disgusting
Which she promptly flushed,
Then aired the cushion. Meanwhile,
Percy washed his paws with a spiteful
Grin sitting on the flagstone hearth
Before her unlit gas logs. What
Did you expect here? A cozy
Little fire in her cozy little house?
Not her. Not here. She pours
Herself a glass of Jim Beam,
Never sherry. Jim is her guy
At the hell end of a hell day.

--Ruth Moose


Sometimes she flips her mind

Back to Oxford, the dear Bodleian

Of Course, and Radcliff Camera.

She studied briefly there. Remembers

Where she found her favorite

Shoes for walking cobblestones.

She loved Alice’s Garden, the Eagle

And Child, boats on the Thames,

The Bedsit she shared with HWLWG.

How they crawled the pubs ghost

Walk, Writing her papers on Jane Austen.

In real ink in the Exeter Library.

She thinks if HWLWG is anywhere

In this world, he’s there

In the darkened pub, his back

To the door and she’ll only

Have to put her arms around him

in an I-Found-You-Hug. But she knows

He’s only vanish, as the ghosts

Did, leaving not a footprint

On her path.

--Ruth Moose

How and where to buy a copy:

Main Street Rag

PO Box 690100

Charlotte, NC 28227



Tipper said...

I enjoyed Ruth's poems. Thank you for introducing me to her : )

Brenda Kay Ledford said...

Thanks for sharing this about Ruth Moose. I enjoyed her poetry. I recall studying writing under her at the John C. Campbell Folk School. I'm glad I was able to study under her.

Anonymous said...

Nancy, Thought I'd stop in and what a wonderful visit I had. The photos as usual always catch my eye, the wren is adorable. One time a wren build a nest in a cabinet of my husband's Body Shop.
I can't imagine how she felt safe among all the noise, but she built there for several years and had babies. Also, I liked the strong endings on Ruth's poems. Thanks for some good reading. Glenda Barrett

Nancy Simpson said...

It is so good to hear from you woman. If you like the poems of Ruth Moose, there are more to come later in the month. Remember part of the book title is And Other Poems.

Glenda Council Beall said...

I look forward to more of Ruth's work on your blog,Nancy. Are you going to give her website, if she has one, and also where the book can be purchased? Perhaps some Independent book stores?
Thanks for sharing Ruth's great poetry with us.

Nancy Simpson said...

Hi Glenda,

Ruth's press is listed with the link for where to buy her book. Just click.