October MourningBook - 2012
On the night of October 6, 1998, a gay twenty-one-year-old college student named Matthew Shepard was lured from a Wyoming bar by two young men, savagely beaten, tied to a remote fence, and left to die. Gay Awareness Week was beginning at the University of Wyoming, and the keynote speaker was Lesl#65533;a Newman, discussing her book Heather Has Two Mommies . Shaken, the author addressed the large audience that gathered, but she remained haunted by Matthew's murder. October Mourning, a novel in verse, is her deeply felt response to the events of that tragic day. Using her poetic imagination, the author creates fictitious monologues from various points of view, including the fence Matthew was tied to, the stars that watched over him, the deer that kept him company, and Matthew himself. More than a decade later, this stunning cycle of sixty-eight poems serves as an illumination for readers too young to remember, and as a powerful, enduring tribute to Matthew Shepard's life.
Back matter includes an epilogue, an afterword, explanations of poetic forms, and resources.
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This collection of poems by Newman is intricately woven to show the different views of the people and objects that were directly and indirectly involved with the 1998 Matthew Shepard case. The brutality and pain compels the reader to continue reading, even if tears are streaming down your face. There is an excellent plethora of various poetry styles displayed in the book, including free verse, pantoum, rhyming couplets, and sonnets. An emotional journey reflecting on a true story, "October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard" is a must read for literature enthusiasts and recreational readers alike.
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