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Plain View Press

Plain View Press is proud to have published some of the finest writers and poets in the country. Some are emerging talents, some emerged through Plain View Press and went on to build their reputations, and others were established before we published them. It is hard to keep up with everyone, but this is a partial list of the authors and their publications.

List arranged by date of publication.

Susan Bright

Susan Bright is author of 17 books of poetry, including three Austin Book Award winners. She is the editor/publisher of Plain View Press, which since 1975 has published over 100 books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the world. See her weekly comentaries on the earthfamilyalpha blog. For more detail, see Susan's complete bio.

Next to the Last Word
Poetry about the passion, mechanics and aesthetics of the word, more than a hundred new poems and selected early work--

"A dazzling reach--Athelstan and Little League, the voice of Shakespeare's Dark lady and the shrewd observer of late twentieth-century urban life, witty prose poems and a lyrical series of fourteen-liners. A joy to read and Bright's best book yet." (Betty Sue Flowers, poet and professor, UT Austin)

House of the Mother
Asearch for the nurturing part of the human. It takes a hard look at the enormous world consequence of diminishing the power of the mother, her life force--the healing and nurturing aspect of the individual.

Austin Book Award, 1994
Antique photographs primarily by James Dwight Safford

Tirades and Evidence of Grace
The "Tirades" are just that, how tired we are of the personal, environmental and political atrocities that have infested the planet. The "And" poems are about relationships, love. "Evidence" is a hard look at things as they are. The "Of" section of the book is about the death of the parent. The "Grace" poems are a difficult grace--how light filters through even the darkest hours so courage shines in our souls no matter what.

"They are snapshots of the soul." - Andrew B. Preslar, "Review of Texas Books"
Austin Book Award, 1991, Violet Crown Award, 1992
Photographs by Butch Hancock

Tirades And Evidence Of Grace Cassette Tape
Poetry performed by Susan Bright, short flute passages played by John Hicks. On tape are favorites like "Pie," "Ice," "White Paint and Blue Trim," and "Who the Hell is Gustav?"
44 minutes, $8.95.

A trickster character who dies in every poem or does something so entirely stupid we wish that she would. "How desperately we need poets who can endure the vision, sacrifice bliss, and strip vagueness from such an enemy that must be named if logic is ever to be overcome by its superior--the heart."
Art by Randy Smith Huke
Small Press, October, 1990

See Also: Wind Eyes--A Woman's Reader and Writing Source
Coming Full Circle
Feminist Family Values Forum

Feeding the Crow
Everywhere is Someplace Else--A Literary Anthology

CB Follett

CB Follett is the editor of "Beside the Sleeping Maiden, Poets of Marin" published by Arctos Press in 1997. She received a Poetry Grant from the Marin Arts Council in 1995, was nominated twice for a Pushcart Prize and has two previous collections of poetry from Hot Pepper Press: "The Latitudes of Their Going," and "Gathering the Mountains." She has won various awards. The poem "Bull Kelp," for instance, appeared in "Confluence," and "Calyx," was winner of the Portland Poetry Contest in 1994, received Honorable Mention in the Wildwood Poetry Prize in 1995 and was #3 of the WindRoom series from Radiolarian Press in 1996. She is also an artist who has worked in clay, fiber and now paints in acrylic/mixed media. Many of her works are in private collections nationally.

Visible Bones
An exquisite collection of poetry and art by Northern California poet/artist, CB Follett, editor of "Beside the Sleeping Maiden, Poets of Marin" published by her own Arctos Press. Widely published in literary journals and anthologies around the country, this is her third book of poetry. These poems explore adoption, family, environment, passion, roots and the intrusions of injustice and war.

"CB Follett is a poet of astonishing breadth who addresses both the life of the body and the life of the spirit. When she tackles universal truths, she expands our understanding of the world." - Susan Terris, "Curved Space," LaJolla Poets Press.

"These extraordinary poems evoke through the natural world the quick pleasures and sudden losses of our children." - Lee Meitzen Grue, Editor, "New Laurel Review;" author, "Goodbye Silver, Silver Cloud" and "In the Sweet Balance of the Flesh," Plain View Press.

Alan Birkelbach

Winner: Stevens Poetry Manuscript Prize

Alan Birkelbach is currently a Director of the Poetry Society of Texas and a frequent prizewinner, judge and speaker. His first abook "Bone Song" was published in 1995. He was born and raised in a rural environment in Central Texas.

Weighed in the Balances
This collection of poems by a Texas poet won the National Association of State Poetry Society's 1998 Stevens Poetry Manuscript prize. You will find an authentic Texas voice here, poetry skewed by that strange blend of urban and rural vision that has produced so much fabulous music. The poems are a raft of images--lightning, tornado, farm, dragonfly, the cord of a seining net. "Roll your pant legs up," wade into this lovely stream which God drives across in a "truck with a bad transmission." You will want to "memorize the route." (Diane Glancy, poet, professor, Macalester College)
Cover art by Rusty Specks.

Mitzi Alvin

Alvin lives in the Detroit area where she is poetry editor of "The Bridge," a national literary magazine edited by Jack and Helen Zucker. She is active in the poetry community of the Detroit Metropolitan area.

Evidence to the Contrary
Mitzi Alvin
Where is the evidence? And how does it mount up? These beautifully crafted poems by Mitzi Alvin are jewels of loss and renewal that stir the heart and mind with their quiet ardor, their unwavering honesty.

Alvin is a Michigan poet and the poetry editor of "The Bridge." Her work reaches into the truth of community and family building.

Gay Rubin

An award-winning fiction writer, Gay Rubin has been editor and founder of "Michigan Hot Apples" (an annual literary anthology of poetry and fiction), past president of Detroit Women Writers, and writing instructor at University of Michigan. She is currently host and producer of a new cable TV interview program, "Writers' Roundtable," in Birmingham, Michigan, feature editor for "Cigar Lifestyles Magazine" and at work on a novel.

On A Good Day
Gay Rubin weaves her stories with an eye for the complications, joys and ironies of everyday life. In this collection of short fiction, she explores the intricacies of close relationships between characters who come to life as believably as rain. What would one say to Paul Newman in the dry cleaners? How can a father's hearing loss shield him from his wife's infidelities? The humor is compelling, as it raises deep and fundamental questions--like, what is the meaning of family after all?--that linger long after the last page.

"These stories are finely and unobtrusively crafted--keenly observant, precisely articulated--and seen from a unique angle that makes possible a simultaneity of the comic and sad." (Stuart Dybek)

Linda Ward

Ward lives in Santa Rosa, CA, where she teaches school, runs a private practice as a therapist and has raised four children. This is her first novel. It is a multi-path novel featuring two generic characters, Jeff and Lisa, who make choices and then live out the results of those choices. Each chapter (path) is printed on a different color paper.

Choosing--A Novel for Teens and Parents

Imagine that you, a teenager, are in love. Imagine that you, the parent of a teenager, find yourself wondering if your children know enough about birth control and safe(r) sex to make choices that will serve them now and in the future. Imaging that you, a teenage girl, miss your monthly cycle. Imagine that you, a teenage boy, become sexually active with a girl who chooses to end the relationship. Explore scenarios like these with two characters, Lisa and Jeff.

They are American teenagers. Their parents love them and they love each other. In each chapter of this new, interactive novel, Lisa and Jeff make a different decision about sexuality--abstinence, unprotected sex, safe(r) sex, teen pregnancy, abortion, adoption, teen parenting, changing relationships. Each choice opens a different path to both teenagers and to their families.

This isn't a book about morality and it is not judgmental. Both teenagers and their parents are believable in their solutions to various situations that arise from teen sexuality. "Choosing" tells us not to give up hope, to educate ourselves and each other, to support each other as we move through the cycles of growth that happen at all stages of our lives.

It is a novel that offers a different life story at the end of each chapter because, in fact, the choices we make create our life journeys. You or someone you know has made each of these choices.

Fania Kruger

(1892-1977) Russian born poet whose family immigrated to Texas in the early years of the century to escape the pogroms in Czarist Russia. She was part of a literary circle that included Marianne Moore and Langston Hughes. Eloquent work, finely crafted.

All Seeds Blended
Edited by Bert Kruger Smith
We need the voices of the grandmothers. This is a selected works, compiled from early books by the poet's daughter. The final vision--tolerance, peace, family and holiness, emerge from the magical soul of the poet. This work is simply too important to be lost.
Art by Randy Smith Huke.

Stan Biderman

Stan Biderman is the son of holocaust survivors. He works as an attorney and business consultant. His poetry grew out of a healing journey.

Everything Changes--Spiritual Journey
In these poems, introduced by quotations from an interview with the poet's parents about the Holocaust, we see how the shadow is cast from survivors to their children. We see also how a second generation survivor has journeyed past the horror, fear and pain. Everything changes.

"'Everything Changes'" is written from the body. Words spring at the reader like the only destiny they could have is our soul." - John Lee, Author of "The Flying Boy" and "Facing the Fire"

"'Everything Changes' is a searing document of pain, of struggle, of searching, seeking, finding and losing. Enhanced by Carolyn H. Manosevitz' impressive and expressive work, despite the changes, something of substance endures." - Michael Berenbaun, Director, Research Institute, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

"With skill, style and sensitivity, Stan Biderman sets words to the pathos of his people's traumatic past . . . I highly recommend this book to people of all faiths who struggle with the concept of: God, justice, truth, beauty or goodness." - Alice Holden, CCVI, A Sister of Charity of the Incarnate Word

Cover and art by Carolyn H. Manosevitz

Mary Ann Wehler

Wehler teaches school in Michigan and was named first grade Teacher-of-the-Year for the Detroit area the same month that her first solo book was published. She won first prize in a chapbook contest from Firelands Writing Center in 1995. Wehler waited a long time to start piling up awards. This is powerful work--like a dam bursting.

Walking Through Deep Snow
This poet, who began writing and publishing her poetry in her sixties, has the wisdom of the Crone and the energy of the new writer--flowering, exhuberent. The poems reach from childhood, through adulthood, to the death of parents and friends. They move through the joys and frustrations of being a first grade teacher (one of Detroit's best), to the joys of grandparenting. For centuries women like this, who raised child after child after the men were gone, who never gave up, were silent. And we never heard about their courage, their vast losses, their accomplishments.

"In 'Walking Through Deep Snow' Mary Ann Wehler guides us to some real truths about our lives. Caught in the pain, ambivalence, even the humor of living, she bears witness to what it is that sustains us. Her voice is strong and sincere; her writing is revealing as well as celebratory. In poem after poem she deals boldly with the emotional and physical truth of experience. Her poems of caring for her mother are gems turning in light; her family memories join my own." - Larry Smith, Editor of Bottom Dog Press and "The Heartlands Today"

See Also: Variations on the Ordinary--A Women's Reader

Sue Littleton

Sue Littleton is a poet who grew up in West Texas and then lived in Argentina for twenty years. She was director of a bi-lingual poetry series in Austin called "Poesie de Calle." This is the second book she has pubished since her return to the US.

Ranch on the Pecos--Microcosm USA
Written by a native Texas poet, who lived a third of her life in Argentina where her children and grand-children still live. Her first two books of poetry were published in Spanish. This series of poems about the family ranch on the Pecos River outside of Ozona--downtown West Texas--is a refreshing and eloquent telling of the life, strength and foibles of family land and family love. The characters who speak the poems of the life of the ranch on the Pecos River are real people, made slightly more real by invention. They are funny, outrageous and captivating as is the style of this bilingual poet whose vision is always greater than whatever place it comes from.

If you don't know what sheep dip, windmills and draught have to do with feminism, get to know a few West Texas ranch women.

Cover photo by Kay Sutherland.
Illustrated with antique family photographs and snap shots

Margo LaGattuta

Michigan poet, creative process teacher, editor, radio announcer, 1990 winner of the Gwendolyn Brooks Award. Margo LaGattuta is passionately in love with the goofiness of perception and language. Director of "Inventing the Invisible." Michigan editor for Plain View Press.

Embracing the Fall
The spirit of creativity is alive in everything this poet does. There is passion, question, humor and an artist's vision in these poems which are both fragile and powerful. "A connoisseur of word play, she invents dramatic situations and hangs on for the ricochet of astounding discoveries." - Detroit News

Art by Christine Reising

See also: Almost Touching--A Reader for Women and Men
Wind Eyes--A Woman's Reader and Writing Source
Variations on the Ordinary--A Women's Reader
Up From the Soles of Our Feet--A Women's Reader
Everywhere is Someplace Else--A Literary Anthology

Ann Louise Williamson

Ann Louise Williamson is a poet, mother and student of science. She works at a small hospital in Northen Michigan as a psychiatric nurse. Her poetry is about family, healing and science.

Too Hot, Too Cold, Just Right
This first book by a Northern Michigan poet who also works as a nurse cuts into the science of suffering and healing. It is a book of hope and love for each instant and soul. When science and creativity are integrated, solutions to problems invent themselves.
Art by Michele Gauthier.

See Also: Wind Eyes--A Woman's Reader and Writing Source

Christine Swanberg

Christine Swanberg is a Northern Illinois poet rooted in the heartland of America, pulling at its matrix to find health, love, kindness and maturity. These are gentle and far-reaching poems, finely crafted.

The Tenderness of Memory
These poems speak in a clear, eloquent voice of the rich and harsh reality that is America--comfort and pain. "The tenderness of Christine Swanberg's memories range from harsh to idyllic, and as she conjures them up we share them, almost becoming part of them--feel as the old horse felt, or the abandoned dog, and they become our memories, too." - John Dickson

Photographs by Jeff Swanberg.

Lee Meitzen Grue

New Orleans poet and fiction writer, editor of the "New Laurel Review." National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, fiction, 1984. Her writing is Southern, universal and carefully crafted.

In The Sweet Balance of the Flesh
"If Lee Grue didn't, exist the New Orleans literary community would have to invent her." - New Orleans Picayune Times
"This is a book for those of exquisite taste, and Grue's poetic voice is one to be richly savored." - Sue Brannan Walker, "Negative Capability"

Cover art by Moonyeen McNeilage

Goodbye Silver, Silver Cloud
Stories about New Orleans and the people who live there, people who are free because of the place to be original, like jazz. "She knows this world from the inside and loves it even as she demystifies it." - Andre Codrescu

Cover art by Moonyeen NcNeilage

Betty Sue Flowers

Poet, mythologist, professor of English at UT Austin. Edited works include: "The Power of Myth: Joseph Campbell with Bill Moyers" and "A World of Ideas."

Extending the Shade
Betty Sue Flowers writes of the myth of life: "I think of the poems in the book as moments of a myth that continues to develop and that myth is the story of my life. A poem is a moment in myth." The poetry in this collection comes from the life of an innovator, an educator on a grand scale and a woman who holds art close to the center of being. They are poetic visualizations which speak reality into existence.

Cover art by Harriet Hyams

Mary Esther Frederick

(1930-1995) Mary Esther Frederick was a poet and painter. The child of a Texas/ Mexico family, she grew up in two cultures. Her first book was not published until she was well into her sixties. Mary Esther Frederick died in October, 1995 at age 65. We miss her.

Some Mothers Don't Come In Pastel
A collection of poetry by a woman who raised four children. The poems cross borders of the heart, land and soul. They celebrate family, culture and passion. They are intense, well-crafted and native to the American soul.

Austin Book Award, 1993.
Cover Art by Mary Esther Frederick

how many moons
Mary Esther Frederick, Cynthia J. Harper, Elaine O'Brien, Pamela Rutherford, Hazel Ward
a collection of poetry and prose by five Southern women writers who write about culture, race, gender, recovery and family issues. Fast moving and direct.

Art by Mary Esther Frederick

Dennis Ciscel

Dennis Ciscel works for A.I.D.S. Services of Austin. He has imagined himself into the souls of all kinds of people creating dramatic monologues of astonishing frankness and veracity.

Patting The Air
A collection of poetry written in many voices. We see the lives and deaths of all kinds of people, simple moments of love, confessions so intense that rarely does the soul let even itself in on the secret.

"...its technical virtuosity will floor modern enthusiasts while the potency of its very human stories guarantees to reward the reader with images and emotions they will want to share and experience again and again." - Ric Williams, "Austin Chronicle"

Art by David Swim.

Tiny Stories
A collection of pieces about people who have died of A.I.D.S. and other things. These are not tragic poems. They are witness to the grace and courage of people emeshed in terrible circumstances.

"Heart wrenching in that way that a good cry is gratifying." - Leonard Earl Johnson, "The New Voice"

Art by David Swim

Eve LaSalle Caram

Eve LaSalle Caram teaches fiction writing in The Writer's Program, UCLA-EXT. She grew up on the South Texas coast which is the setting for her first two novels. Like reading a long letter from a favorite family member, we find comfort in her meandering, informal style and then, just when we're nice and relaxed, she reveals the harsh truths we try to avoid, but can't. West Coast fiction editor for Plain View Press.

Wintershine--A Book of Maps, Pictures, Laments, Celebrations, Praise
Set in South Texas during the Great Depression, it ends with magic at the coldest instant of Winter Solstice. In Caram's richly woven prose style, we find the hopes and dreams, failures and courage of a family split apart by hardship and held together by love. Wintershine is a three generation story held together by the voice of the mother as it echoes in the soul of the daughter who tells the story.

Art by Jeff Jack

Dear Corpus Christi
a letter-novel written from the point of view of a professional woman writing letters to her childhood and home town--Corpus Christi, Texas in the 40s and 50's--a hard town by anyone's standards--great food--harsh truths.

"Body and soul resonate wonderfully in this accomplished and compelling novel." - Robert Love Taylor

Brenda Black White

Brenda Black White is a Texas writer and story-teller who has survived two decades of a crippling disease called Scleroderma, which she refers to as "this damn stallion I'm going to ride until I die." Her poetry celebrates country people, the ranchers and small town inhabitants of Callahan County in West Texas. She performs her poetry from memory to captivated audiences who can hardly believe that such powerful grace, passion and life force can come from someone who "seems to be" so fragile. Looks are deceiving.

Callahan County
These poems, set in Callahan County in the 1950's, combine traditional poetic form with the story-telling voice of folklore, bringing us tales the poet overheard on the back porch as she grew up, charged and vitalized with the consciousness of a modern poet.

"Brenda Black White has a strong feeling for country scenes and country folk, but her vision reaches beyond the simple, homely life of nostalgic tradition. The people of her poems are complex, sometimes smiling, sometimes darkly frustrated, trapped by dreams unfulfilled, horizons unreached. We turn from her work moved but uneasy, for often as not we have seen ourselves. " - Elmer Kelton

Cover by Rick Williams

Marcella Bryant

Marcella Bryant works as a speech therapist. Ancient Child was written as part of a healing process. Recently, Bryant has taken a new name, but continues working with writing groups and creating new poetry.

Ancient Child
This difficult and beautiful collection of poetry is about the reconstruction of a shattered life. Like holocaust victims, survivors of incest must re-create the self from a world in which all aspects of civilization have been devastated.

"Ancient Child should be required reading in every high school and university psychology or child development course." - Holly Hunt Kost, "Small Press Magazine"

Genevieve Vaughan

Genevieve Vaughan is the Director of the Foundation for a Compassionate Society, an activist, feminist organization which has created programs for social, political, and environmental justice based on feminist principles all over the world for the last ten years. She is an activist and a feminist theorist.

For-Giving--A Feminist Crtiticism of Exchange
(From the Foundation Series)

Introduction by Robin Morgan
In this radical departure from traditional thinking, Vaughan draws the distinction between giftgiving, which is based on mothering, and exchange, which is based on masculine socialization--a paradigm that has brought the planet to the brink of extinction. It can be replaced--from within, by a paradigm based on mothering.

Art by Liliana Wilson, graphics by Liliana Wilson and Genevieve Vaughan.

See Also: Feminist Family Values Forum

Sally Jacques

dancer/performance artist who produces large-scale, issue-based performance art pieces in collaboration with other artists and the community. "Sally Jacques' public work clearly demonstrates that art can make an impact on contemporary life."
Saundra Goldman, "Art Papers."

64 Beds
tells with photographs, essays and performance notes, the story of a three-year collaborative public art project centered on the issue of homelessness in America, intellectually based on the "I Ching" and artistically the project of more than five hundred artists--dancers, performers, writers and multi-media artists. Photo documentation by Danna Byrom, and others.

Yana Mintoff Bland

Yana Mintoff Bland is an environmental activist, and an economist. She is the president of the Association of Women of the Mediterranean Region, a group of women from more than twenty countries who meet annually in Malta for the purpose of presenting papers on issues of critical importance of the region and to the world.

Nobody Can Imagine Our Longing
(From the Foundation Series)

Edited by Yana Mintoff Bland
Addresses from the Association of Women of the Mediterranean Region, 1996 Conference

"Nobody Can Imagine Our Longing" presents the previously muffled voices of victims of war and military occupation which can at last be heard through 30 selected writings of the most recent conference of the Association of the Women of the Mediterranean Region--women from the former Yugoslavia, Italy, the Philippines, Algeria, Malta, Tunisia, Palestine, Lebanon, Israel, and Cyprus explain what political conflicts have meant in human terms to women and their children.

In Search of Peace
The voices of an international group of women who gather for a yearly conference presented by the Association of Women of the Mediterranean Region are directed in this volume to the subject of Education for Peace.

"There cannot be stability, progress and development unless there is peace and there cannot be peace unless we learn to respect each other's human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Phillip T. Stephens

Poems, Parables and Prayers. Contributed to Feeding the Crow. Phillip T. Stephens began publishing poetry in the early 1980s. His work explores how metaphoric thinking affects values and belief systems. He runs Ontology Development with his wife Carol in Austin, Texas. They consult with businesses, schools and non-profit organizations to teach Total Thinking, a metaphorical model for business and organizational decision making and communication. They also work with animal rescue issues. You can reach him at ontology@io.com.

Mary Hebert. Edited Not Black and White.

Gloria Steinem. Contributed to Feminist Family Values Forum.

Angela Davis. Contributed to Feminist Family Values Forum.

Maria Jimenez. Contributed to Feminist Family Values Forum.

Mililani Trask. Contributed to Feminist Family Values Forum.

Scott Greer . Cities of the Soul.


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