Coming right up: Poetry month.
Already here: A fat anthology of the works of all 43 poets laureate of the United States. This pleasantly hefty volume with the red, white and blue striped cover (how patriotic!) is set up in reverse chronological order, starting with the current poet laureate, W.S. Merwin, and working its way back in time, through Louise Glück and Billy Collins and Maxine Kumin and Robert Frost.
There are, of course, Minnesota connections. Reed Whittemore, poet laureate (called "consultant in poetry," back in the day) 1964-65 and 1984-85, taught at Carleton College. Richard Eberhart (1959-61) was born in Austin, Minn. Allen Tate (1943-44) taught at the U.
But you don't need a provincial reason to page through this book. You have Rita Dove! Robert Pinsky! Gwendolyn Brooks! William Carlos Williams! All at your fingertips. The book was published last fall by W.W. Norton and sells for $39.95 -- a bargain at twice the price.
• Do you like to write? Do you like to read? Do you like to eat? Twin Cities writers Faith Sullivan and Lorna Landvik will host a panel discussion today on women writing in the kitchen, featuring Sandra Benitez, Wang Ping, Patricia Weaver Francisco and Mary Rockcastle. Literary baked goods -- Proustian madeleines, Flaubert fudge -- will be for sale. The event is free, from 2 to 4 this afternoon at Open Book, 1011 Washington Av. S., Mpls.
• "Joined at the Hip: A History of Jazz in the Twin Cities," by Jay Goetting, with a foreword by Leigh Kamman, will be published in April by the Minnesota Historical Society Press.
• "A View of the Lake: Living the Dream on Lake Superior," by Beryl Singleton Bissell, will be published in June by Lake Superior Port Cities. Bissell is the author of "The Scent of God," and her new book is a collection of essays about leaving the big city for a life along the North Shore. She and her husband live in Schroeder, Minn.
• "The Darkest Evening" and "Song of Sampo Lake," by William Durbin of Lake Vermilion, have been reprinted by the University of Minnesota Press. Durbin's historical young adult novels are about the Finnish settlers of northern Minnesota.
• The sixth annual "First Books" lecture, sponsored by the University of Minnesota's Creative Writing program and Graywolf Press, will feature six authors: poet Francine Tolf, memoirist Gayla Marty, short-story writer Alan Heathcock, and novelists Swati Avasthi, Matt Burgess and Kevin Fenton. Readings begin at 7 p.m. Thursday, followed by a panel discussion at 8:15 p.m. in the McNamara Alumni Center, 200 SE. Oak St., Mpls.
• "Wired Wilderness: Technologies of Tracking and the Making of Modern Wildlife," by Etienne Benson, has been published by the Johns Hopkins University Press. Benson's book deals heavily with University of Minnesota scientists who played a leading role in inventing wildlife radio tracking.