Monday, February 21, 2011

Working Words: Betsy Sholl and "Pink Slip"

Betsy Sholl's poem "Pink Slip" is in the new anthology, Working Words: Punching the Clock and Kicking out the Jams from Coffee House Press. Anthology editor M.L. Liebler will be traveling to Cheyenne this Saturday to conduct a number of events for Wyoming Poetry Out Loud.

Betsy Sholl was named Maine Poet Laureate in 2006. She's published seven collections of poetry and was a founding member of the innovative small press, Alice James Books. She's published widely and won numerous awards, including fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Maine Arts Commission. 

In "Pink Slip," Betsy explores the life of a woman fired after 20 years of hard work. In this excerpt, she gets her pink slip:
All you did was check your watch, all
you did was back me to the door,
where outside they were hauling my car,
a pirate company, so not even the cops could say
where it is. Is this America?
I've seen countries on TV where the natives 
give funny looks to the fat men they serve drinks to
on patios. "Bastard" would be
my translation. Or whatever the deaf woman is
banging onto the locked windows of cars jammed at
the on-ramp trying to leave the city....
Read the entire poem in Working Words. And many other poems and short stories and essays about working people.

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