Ancient Hidden Poems, Story-Time From Space, and More


Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories:

New imaging techniques have revealed poems and writings hidden on thousands of ancient palimpsests stored at the world’s oldest continually operating library at Saint Catherine’s Monastery on the Sinai Peninsula. Many of the parchments, which date back to the eighth and twelfth centuries, are written in languages that have not been used for hundreds of years, such as Caucasian Albanian and Christian Palestinian Aramaic. (Atlantic)

Two Ohio authors will have their children’s books sent to the International Space Station on Sunday as part of the three-year-old educational initiative Story Time From Space, through which astronauts at the station record themselves reading children’s books related to science. (Columbus Dispatch)

Ruth Franklin profiles novelist Claire Messud, and explores how the author has “specialized in creating unusual female characters with ferocious, imaginative inner lives.” Norton will publish Messud’s new novel, The Burning Girl, later this month. (New York Times)

Poet and educator Clement Mallory has started a camp for kids in Greensboro, North Carolina, that combines basketball and poetry. Kids ages four through thirteen spend the day on activities like the Poem Dribbling Maze and the Shooting Word Challenge, and play games where they are divided onto “Team Metaphor” and “Team Simile.” (Triad City Beat)

“Solnit the oddball essayist was suddenly and unexpectedly a progressive icon, a wise female elder.” The New York Times considers how the left has made the work of Rebecca Solnit their “balm and rallying cry.”

Meanwhile, Bustle rounds up thirty poetry collections by women that will “keep you motivated to resist,” from Aja Monet’s My Mother Was a Freedom Fighter to Audre Lorde’s Our Dead Behind Us.

Ava DuVernay, director of Selma and A Wrinkle In Time, will adapt Octavia Butler’s classic 1987 science fiction novel, Dawn, for television. (Deadline)

The Guardian talks with Zinzi Clemmons about her debut novel, What We Lose, and the real-life experiences and books that inspired her. Clemmons was also featured in Poets & Writers Magazine’s “First Fiction 2017.”