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  • 0 read more “A Whisper of Satin”: The Infant Dress Leitmotif

    “A Whisper of Satin”: The Infant Dress Leitmotif

    by Michelle Thurlow

    Although best-selling inspirational novelist Beverly Lewis is understandably credited with "g[iving] birth to" the lucrative Amish fiction genre in 1997 with the release of her inaugural adult novel The Shunning (Gorski, par. 9), Lewis was not the first author to write about horse-and-buggy Plain folk, nor was she the first to pen romance novels about them.

    As Steven Nolt points out, "The dawning of the twentieth century brought the prospect of new relationships between modernity and a people [the Amish] who stood apart from its promises and goals" (257), as illustrated by the publication of a book ...

  • 10 read more Passing on the Faith: Mennonite Writing for Children

    Passing on the Faith: Mennonite Writing for Children

    by Kathy Meyer Reimer

    Mennonites claim a strong heritage of women writers--in children’s and adolescent literature. In examining the trends of publishing at Herald Press, the book division of the Mennonite Publishing House at Scottdale, Pennsylvania, a number of distinct waves of literature become clear. I will examine the trends from Herald Press, not because it is the definitive press for Mennonite authors or illustrators, but because it has consistently published literature for children over the past 60 years. In each era of publishing, I will suggest some examples. They are not comprehensive, but representative of a specific genre, emphasis or style of writing ...

  • 0 read more Some Things I Think About While Illustrating

    Some Things I Think About While Illustrating

    by Ingrid Hess

    To see Ingrid Hess's colorfully illustrated article about her work, click on the title above.

  • 0 read more On Frosting and Broccoli

    On Frosting and Broccoli

    by Ingrid Hess

    As presented to a meeting of Jesuits at “Search for Meaning,” the 2010 Pacific Northwest Spirituality Book Festival, Feb. 13, 2010. Also at College Community Mennonite Brethren Church, Fresno, April 4.

  • 0 read more Schnee, 1939

    Schnee, 1939

    by Barbara Nickel

    The sky makes him stumble out of the barn. That excuse would make Papa snort. He’d say, “If not the sky something else -- a bucket, a clod of frozen horse manure -- my son would stumble over a fly in his path.” But just out the barn door, Art’s on his knees and can’t take his eyes off the sky, huge and strange with something about to happen. There’s a heap of dark clouds, like waves tossing a battleship that’s shelling enemy ships trying to hide in enemy clouds.

    Shelling the enemy. He should try to erase that picture from ...

  • 1 read more Poetry Feature: Six Poems

    Poetry Feature: Six Poems

    by Sarah Klassen

    CMW is pleased to introduce readers to a group of new poems by award-winning Canadian poet Sarah Klassen, the “featured poet” of this issue. In these six poems Sarah explores the mystical possibilities indwelling in the moments of a life lived with full presence. Natural imagery evokes the prairie landscape of Winnipeg and its surroundings. In “Prairieology” the landscape becomes suffused with spiritual significance—offering, in the spirit of Emily Dickinson, a natural language for the divine that both grounds and replies to theology. “Rising” and “Deep Bay Reflection” suggest the poet’s awareness of the interconnection between all created things, evoking the tension between what we can and cannot see, as well as what we refuse to see. In “After the Fall” the poet is forced to remember her bodily limits as she skis after an accident—aware of the brain’s mad flights of fancy as well as its keen powers of observation. “Bird” invites the reader to meditate on the ways in which we invest birdsong with human longing. “On Poverty” challenges viewers to investigate their attitudes towards human nature. –A.H.

  • 0 read more Five Sarabandes

    Five Sarabandes

    by David Wright

    Poems by David Wright

  • 0 read more  My Small Books of Bach

    My Small Books of Bach

    by David Wright

    "A real diehard, indestructible, irresolvable obsession in a poet is nothing less than a blessing," writes Tony Hoagland. "The poet with an obsession never has to search for subject matter. It is always right there, welling up like an Artesian spring on a piece of property with bad drainage.

    - Tony Hoagland, Real Sofistikashun

    As I type this, music pours through my headphones, a Bach suite for unaccompanied cello, recorded by the great Pablo Casals in the middle of the last century. Hearing Casals play on my iPod, I can’t help but think of the time I heard this same piece ...

  • 0 read more Outside of the Text

    Outside of the Text

    by Jeffrey S. Peachey

    A book conservator often enters into public perception heavily colored by, and often confused with, romantic notions of a “Master Craftsman,” “Master Bookbinder” or “Master Restorer.” In a world where many use their hands only to tap at a keyboard or lift a cup of coffee, the idea of a craftsman seems refreshingly simple, a bit anachronistic, very poetic and entirely appealing. Fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately!) these romantic ideas of a bookbinder bear little resemblance to what I do.

    Although the terminology is somewhat debatable, in North America a bookbinder is usually someone who makes new fine bindings ...

  • 0 read more Publishing: The Seeds of New Growth

    Publishing: The Seeds of New Growth

    by Jane Hiebert-White

    Sometimes change creeps up on you, slowly, without clear signposts marking the shift from point A to point B. Other times, change detonates – blasting a hole in what was and clearing the way for the new.

    From my vantage point as a publisher at a scholarly journal in 2010, the bomb of disruptive innovation has gone off. The casualty list in the world of publishing is staggering: newspapers, newsweeklies, journals, consumer magazines.

    “Not Gourmet,” I moan! I have box upon box of back issues. Okay, they’re up in the attic. At my parents’ house. I can always go ...