Heather Lende's blog

Nicholas Galanin: a Name You Should Know

What with this website's new splash, the paperback launch hoopla, a trip to Juneau to be the featured writer for the UAS Literary&Arts Journal Tidal Echoes , my agent's praise of my novel manuscript, I'm a little overwhelmed. All this should make me very happy, and it does, except that it makes it harder to write a good sentence. The expectations are suddenly so high. The trouble with publicity is that you shouldn't believe it, because if you do it makes it hard to even blog for fear of disappointing everyone.

Ellen's Story

If you can't get a subscription to the Chilkat Valley News, which I'd suggest, since a paper is best read in your hands and used later for fire starter or house breaking puppies, you may read the obituary I wrote (and Tom Morphet edited for brevity, it was an 8 pager this week-- and his style-- as in mostly AP so no-editorializing) for Haines' librarian Ellen Borders here. Read the rest of the local news while you are there.

Sunday's Thought

 From the poem "Hardest to Love", by Tina Johnson in the UAS Tidal Echoes Literary & Arts Journal 2011:

I want to love best those things that are hardest to love,

the cold rain no one welcomes or thanks.

 

Choose Respect

 Alaska has the shameful distinction of being in the top five states when it comes to domestic violence and child abuse. Governor Sean Parnell wants to change that, and has encouraged Choose Respect marches and rallies around the state to call attention to the problem and help victims. We held one in Haines yesterday. About thirty people marched carrying banners, balloons, and beating drums from the bank parking lot on Main Street to the library. Police Chief Lowe told the crowd, "Let victims know it's not their fault and that we have help out there for them.

April Woman's Day Sings

The April 17 issue of Woman's Day includes my column "Sing as One" about the Haines A Cappella Women's Choir. One song I mention, Emily Dickinson's poem "Hope" set to an Irish melody by our director, Nancy Nash, has generated a lot of mail. Readers want to know more about it. I asked Nancy to reply to one of the inquiries, and here (with her permission) is her response:

 

 Dear Ms. Weiner,

Some News About Grief

I have been helping a little ( a very little, Beth does it all, I think) with the Hospice of Haines newsletter, and reviewed an article in the January 24th Time magazine by Ruth Davis Konigsberg whose new book The Truth About Grief  (Simon & Schuster, 2011) debunks some commonly believed theories about the ways Americans grieve thanks to a load of new studies on it. She writes, "The latest research indicates that grief is not a series of steps but rather a grab bag of symptoms that come and go and, eventually, lift."  I thought that might cheer you up on this rainy day.

Keep Your Chin Up

I don't think you could have fit another person in the school last night for the Haines People for Peace Japan disaster relief fundraiser - billed as a modest Japanese dinner with immodest desserts- (available through an auction). The meal, a traditional chicken and egg stew with rice and miso-tofu soup was not modest at all. It was really good. The organizers and cooks, the crew from Mosey's Mexican Cantina and the People for Peace group, did a great job. When I saw the line down the hall, I figured we would make a donation, stay and visit a little, and then go home to eat. Not so.

A Not so Quiet Week

Well, the Merchants lost, 101-84 against Angoon, but Tyler Healy, Andrew Friske and Jesse McGraw made the all-tourney team and just playing in the championship game at Gold Medal is a big deal. Also, I talked to Ralph last night and a memorial service for Ellen Borders is scheduled for Saturday April 9 at 1:00pm in the Chilkat Center. And in the way the world keeps on spinning, and we keep on picking each other up, there will be a Japanese dinner tomorrow night at the school cafeteria at 5:30 to raise funds for the victims of the disaster there. That's not all, it will be a busy week.

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