A Geographical Tour of Literary America

The Grand Tour of Literary Landmarks resulted from my students' success with another project that we called "Poetic License with THE AMAZING RACE." This new journey also begins and ends in my students' hometown. Chosen writers are specific to our curriculum and texts; however, teachers can adapt new selections to their students' needs. Side images are their original work. Photo images at each destination go directly to official sites or to the slideshows of my own travel photos. The main sources of written material here are www.Poets.org and Adventures in American Literature, Heritage Edition and Pegasus Edition.

Curriculum Outline


Spartanburg, South Carolina



Hello from Spartanburg, South Carolina - my hometown!




Go to Hub City Writers Project . Study the web site and then report on its purpose, press, and bookstore.




Be sure to answer these questions:

What is Hub City Writers Project?

What creative writing workshops are being offered in the next two months?

Name three poetry books that Hub City Writers Project has available currently?

Start here on the literary map!

Columbia, South Carolina






On the literary map, travel from Spartanburg to Columbia, South Carolina.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Columbia, South Carolina

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Columbia, South Carolina


Read about Henry Timrod and "Ode on the Confederate Dead."

Explain the symbol in line 3.

Explain the allusion in line 8.

What is an ode?

What words and phrases convey a religious feeling?

In this ceremony the living pay honor to their fallen soldiers. Which lines in the poem indicate that this simple tribute is more appropriate than the monuments that will later be placed here?

Charleston, South Carolina

On the literary map, travel from Columbia to Charleston, South Carolina.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Charleston, South Carolina

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Charleston, South Carolina

Charleston, South Carolina is the birthplace of Henry Timrod.



Read "Charleston" by Henry Timrod (1829-1867).

Calm as that second summer which precedes
The first fall of snow,
In the broad sunlight of heroic deeds,
The city bides the foe.

As yet, behind their ramparts, stern and proud,
Her bolted thunders sleep, --
Dark Sumter, like a battlemented cloud,
Looms o'er the solemn deep.

No Calpe frowns from lofty cliff or scaur
To guard the holy strand;
But Moultrie holds in leash her dogs of war
Above the level sand.

And down the dunes a thousand guns lie couched,
Unseen, beside the flood, --
Like tigers in some Orient jungle crouched
That wait and watch for blood.

Meanwhile, through streets still echoing with trade,
Walk grave and thoughtful men,
Whose hands may one day wield the patriot's blade
As lightly as the pen.

And maidens, with such eyes as would grow dim
Over a bleeding hound,
Seem each one to have caught the strength of him
Whose sword she sadly bound.

Thus girt without and garrisoned at home,
Day patient following day,
Old Charleston looks from roof and spire and dome,
Across her tranquil bay.

Ships, through a hundred foes, from Saxon lands
And spicy Indian ports,
Bring Saxon steel and iron to her hands,
And Summer to her courts.

But still, along yon dim Atlantic line,
The only hostile smoke
Creeps like a harmless mist above the brine,
From some frail, floating oak.

Shall the Spring dawn, and she, still clad in smiles,
And with an unscathed brow,
Rest in the strong arms of her palm-covered isles,
As fair and free as now?

We know not; in the temple of the Fates
God has inscribed her doom;
And, all untroubled in her faith, she waits
The triumph or the tomb.

Jacksonville, Florida

On the literary map, travel from Charleston, South Carolina, to Jacksonville, Florida.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Jacksonville, Florida

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Jacksonville, Florida

Visit James Weldon Johnson at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"James Weldon Johnson was born in _______ in Jacksonville, Florida. He was encouraged to study English literature and the European musical tradition. He attended Atlanta University with the intention that the education he received there would be used to ________________. After graduation, he took a job as __________________________________________."

"In 1900, he wrote the song 'Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing'" on the occasion of Lincoln's birthday; the song which became immensely popular in the black community and became known as the '_____________________________.' Johnson moved to New York in 1901 to collaborate with his brother Rosamond, a composer, and attained some success as a songwriter for Broadway, but decided to take a job as U.S. Consul to Venezuela in 1906. While employed by the diplomatic corps, Johnson had poems published in the Century Magazine and The Independent."

"In 1912, Johnson published The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man under a pseudonym, the story of a musician who rejects his black roots for a life of material comfort in the white world. The novel explores _______________________________________________, a common theme in the writing of the _________________________________."

"He had a talent for persuading people of differing ideological agendas to work together for a common goal, and in 1920 he became the national organizer for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). He edited The Book of American Negro Poetry (1922), a major contribution to the history of African-American literature. His book of poetry ___________________(1927) was influenced by his impressions of the rural South, drawn from a trip he took to Georgia while a freshman in college. It was this trip that ignited his interest in the African-American folk tradition."

Read "The Creation" and "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing."

Key West, Florida

On the literary map, travel from Jacksonville to Key West, Florida.
Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Key West, Florida

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Key West, Florida

Visit "The Poet Homes of Key West, Florida" at www.Poets.org



Visit Elizabeth Bishop at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Elizabeth Bishop was born in Worcester, Massachusetts. When she was very young her father died, her mother was committed to a mental asylum, and she was sent to live with her grandparents in Nova Scotia. She earned a bachelor's degree from Vassar College in 1934."

She was independently wealthy, and from 1935 to 1937 she spent time __________ to France, Spain, North Africa, Ireland, and Italy and then settled in Key West, Florida, ___________. Her poetry is filled with _________________________________________________, as with the Florida poems in her first book of verse, North and South, published in 1946."

"She was influenced by the poet _______________, who was a close friend, mentor, and stabilizing force in her life. Unlike her contemporary and good friend Robert Lowell, who wrote in the 'confessional' style, Bishop's poetry avoids _____________________________, and focuses instead with great subtlety on her impressions of the physical world."

Read "Filling Station," and listen to "The Armadilla" as you follow along.

Read "The Fish" and answer the questions.

I caught a tremendous fish
and held him beside the boat
half out of water, with my hook
fast in a corner of his mouth.
He didn't fight.
He hadn't fought at all.
He hung a grunting weight,
battered and venerable
and homely. Here and there
his brown skin hung like strips
like ancient wall-paper,
and its pattern of darker brown
was like wall-paper:
shapes like full-blown roses
stained and lost through age.
He was speckled with barnacles,
fine rosettes of lime,
and infested
with tiny white sea-lice,
and underneath two or three
rags of green weed hung down.
While his gills were breathing in
the terrible oxygen
-the frightening gills,
fresh and crisp with blood,
that can cut so badly -
I thought of the coarse white flesh
packed in like feathers,
the big bones and the little bones,
the dramatic reds and blacks
of his shiny entrails,
and the pink swim-bladder
like a big peony.
I looked into his eyes
which were far larger than mine
but shallower, and yellowed,
the irises backed and packed
with tarnished tinfoil
seen through the lenses
of old scratched isinglass.
They shifted a little, but not
to return my stare.
-It was more like the tipping
of an object toward the light.
I admired his sullen face,
the mechanism of his jaw,
and then I saw
that from his lower lip
-if you could call it a lip-
grim, wet and weapon-like,
hung five old pieces of fish-line,
or four and a wire leader
with the swivel still attached,
with all their five big hooks
grown firmly in his mouth.
A green line, frayed at the end
where he broke it, two heavier lines,
and a fine black thread
still crimped from the strain and snap
when it broke and he got away.
Like medals with their ribbons
frayed and wavering,
a five-haired beard of wisdom
trailing from his aching jaw.
I stared and stared
and victory filled up
the little rented boat,
from the pool of bilge
where oil had spread a rainbow
around the rusted engine
to the bailer rusted orange,
the sun-cracked thwarts,
the oarlocks on their strings,
the gunnels - until everything
was rainbow, rainbow, rainbow!
And I let the fish go.


In “The Fish,” the speaker examines the old fish closely. What is its brown skin compared to in lines 9 – 15? What details make this comparison effective?



How is the inside of the fish described?




The old fish is viewed as a kind of war veteran. How does the comparison in lines 47 – 61 reinforce this idea? Whose “victory” is the speaker talking about in lines 66-67?

Key West, Florida

On the literary map, you are still in Key West, Florida.

Visit Mrs. Steller's Ernest Hemingway Gallery.

Why did Hemingway choose Key West for a home? Here is the answer.

Read a biography of Hemingway .

Read "Big Two-Hearted River" in your text and answer the questions.

The river runs through the scorched earth of Seney - beween the two "hearts," the fresh, sunlit meadow and the tangled, mist-shrouded swamp. What is significant about the fact that in the midst of a devastated countryside the river still contains living healthy fish?

At what points in the story do you first become aware that something is wrong with Nick? Explain.

Find passages in this story that express pleasure in purely physical sensations. Hemingway has a reputation for being able to convey precisely how a thing looks or how it feels. Do you think he deserves this reputations? Cite examples from the story to support your answer.

Judging from the story, what do you think Hemingway considered important in life? What kinds of skills did he think it imortant for a person to have? How did he think a person should face life? Support your answers with details from the story.

Why is trout fishing particularly difficult in a swamp? Why do think Nick sees fishing there as a "tragic adventure"?

Sylvester, Georgia

On the literary map, travel from Key West, Florida, to Sylvester, Georgia.
Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Sylvester, Georgia

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Sylvester, Georgia

[Yes, we are stopping in Sylvester, Georgia! I grew up in nearby Albany, Georgia. She now lives in Charleston, South Carolina. When the Heart Waits was the first of her books that I read. My students enjoy The Secret Life of Bees.]

Visit Mrs. Steller's Sue Monk Kidd Gallery.

Visit Sue Monk Kidd at www.SueMonkKidd.com

Macon, Georgia



On the literary map, travel from Columbus to Macon, Georgia.


Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Macon, Georgia

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Macon, Georgia

Visit Sidney Lanier at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

Sidney Lanier was born in ____________ Georgia.

Music first captured his interest. He learned to play the _____, _____, ____, ___ and ______.

In 1874, Lanier published his poem "Corn," which earned him many admirers, one of whom, Bayard Taylor, commissioned the poet to write the cantata for the
_____________________________________ .

Read "The Song of the Chattahoochee."

Explain the PERSONIFICATION in line 13.

Each stanza opens and closes with a slightly varying refrain to indicate a cycle - that is, in the river's end is its beginning. Write the refrains of each opening and closing of stanzas.

What is the regular rhyme scheme of each stanza?

Internal rhymes intensify the sense of the harmony Lanier so vales in nature. Analyze the following as use of internal rhyme:

I hurry AMAIN to reach the PLAIN
With a lover's PAIN to attain the PLAIN
HINT: examples of assonance and consonance

List five (5) examples of ALLITERATION in the second stanza.

Columbus, Georgia


On the literary map, travel from Sylvester to Columbus, Georgia.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Columbus, Georgia

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Columbus, Georgia

Visit Mrs. Steller's Carson McCuller Gallery.

Read about Carson McCullers . Here is a timeline of her life and work.

"In our old Georgia home we used to have two sitting rooms -- a back one and a front one -- with folding doors between. These were the family living rooms and the theatre of my shows. The front sitting room was the auditorium, the back sitting-room the stage. The sliding doors the curtain." [Carson McCullers, writing about her home at 1519 Stark Avenue, Columbus.]

"The young Carson McCullers dropped a final curtain on her sitting-room shows 'when I first discovered Eugene O'Neill.' She was introduced to O'Neill at the Columbus library, and shortly afterwards, she put the gentle family plays of her childhood behind her. By age sixteen, McCullers had written her first short story, Sucker, and at twenty-three, she published her first novel, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Columbus is undeniably a character in the novel. Nearby Fort Benning plays an unidentified role in her second novel, Reflections in a Golden Eye."

from "Carson McCullers" on the Southern Literary Trail

Milledgeville, Georgia



On the literary map, travel from Macon to Milledgeville, Georgia.
Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Milledgeville, Georgia

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Milledgeville, Georgia

Visit Mrs. Steller's Flannery O'Connor Gallery.

Read about Flannery O'Connor at http://www.southernliterarytrail.org/




Read more about her at www.GeorgiaEncyclopedia.org

Fill-in-the-blanks from the summary at www.AndalusiaHistoricFarm.org

"Mary Flannery O’Connor was born in 1925 in ___________________, the only child of Edward F. and Regina Cline O’Connor. The O’Connors lived at 207 East Charlton St. across LaFayette Square from the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist where the family attended Mass. In the spring of 1938, the family moved to __________ where Edward O’Connor was employed as a Federal Housing Authority real estate appraiser. In 1940, the O’Connors moved to Milledgeville to live in the Cline family home on Greene Street. Mr. O’Connor died of _______early in 1941, and Mrs. O’Connor and Flannery continued to live in the Milledgeville family home along with Flannery’s aunts. It is here that Flannery would continue to live, with a bedroom on the second floor, while she attended Peabody High School and Georgia State College for Women (now Georgia College and State University)."

"When Flannery O’Connor left Milledgeville in 1945 to attend the State University of Iowa, she enrolled in the Writers Workshop conducted by Paul Engle. Her thesis there comprised a collection of short stories entitled The Geranium, which would contain the seed of her first novel. She received a Master of Fine Arts degree after two years but remained in Iowa for another year before going to the Yaddo Foundation'sartist colony near Saratoga Springs, New York. Afterwards she lived in New York City where she was introduced to Robert and Sally Fitzgerald, with whom she lived for over a year in Ridgefield, Connecticut. During this time she was writing her first novel Wise Blood."

"In late 1950 Flannery O’Connor began to exhibit symptoms of the disease that had killed her father. Her condition forced Flannery to return to Milledgeville in 1951, but she continued ____________________________________________. But instead of returning to the family home in town, Flannery and her mother moved to the family farm, __________, where Flannery lived for thirteen years, until her death in 1964. "

READ: "A Good Man Is Hard to Find" or "The Crop" in your text.






[TEACHERS: Lesson Plans]

Milledgeville, Georgia


On the literary map, you are still in Milledgeville, Georgia.

Read about Alice Walker's life in Milledgeville, Georgia, at
www.SouthernLiteraryTrail.org

Visit with Alice Walker at
www.GeorgiaEncyclopedia.org

Atlanta, Georgia

On the literary map, travel from Milledgeville to Atlanta, Georgia.
Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Atlanta, Georgia

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Atlanta, Georgia

Visit James Dickey at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"James Dickey was born in _________________, a suburb of Atlanta, on February 2, 1923. His interest in poetry was awakened by his father, a lawyer who used to read his son famous speeches. As a boy Dickey read Byron, and later, a volume of Byron's poetry was the the young poet's first purchase. Already tall—six feet three inches—as a boy, he became a high school football star, eventually becoming a varsity player at _________________in South Carolina. In 1942, Dickey left school to enlist in the U.S. Air Force. In between combat missions in the Pacific, he read Conrad Aiken and an anthology of modern poetry by Louis Untermeyer, and developed a taste for the apocalyptic poets, including ___________and Kenneth Patchen."

"When he returned from the war, Dickey enrolled in Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, where he studied anthropology, astronomy, philosophy, and foreign languages, as well as English literature. Encouraged to ____________, Dickey spent his senior year focusing on his craft, and eventually had a poem published in the Sewanee Review. Determined to write, he pursued graduate work, first at Vanderbilt, then at Rice University in Houston, Texas."

"The Air Force recalled Dickey to train officers for the ______________. On his return he took a position with the University of Florida, though he resigned in April 1956, discouraged by the institutional nature of teaching."

"At the age of thirty-three, Dickey moved to New York, where he was hired to __________copy at the prominent McCann-Ericson agency. He stayed in New York for several years before moving to Atlanta agencies."

"In 1960, Dickey's first collection, ________________, was published, and he soon abandoned his lucrative career to devote his life to poetry fulltime. In 1961, he accepted a Guggenheim Fellowship and spent a year in Italy with his family. Two of his most famous volumes of verse, ____________(1964) and ________________________(1965)—for which he was awarded both the Melville Cane Award and National Book Award—were published soon after. Dickey then taught, lectured, and wrote."

"'I came to poetry with no particular qualifications,' Dickey stated in Howard Nemerov's Poets on Poetry. 'I had begun to suspect, however, that there _______________________buried in every human being like Ariel in his tree, and that the people whom we are pleased to call poets are only those who have ______________________________________its prison.'"

"Applauded for their ambitious experimentation with __________ and __________, Dickey's poems address humanity and violence by presenting the _____________s of humans and animals as antithetical to the __________________________."

"From 1966 to 1968, Dickey held the position of Poetry Consultant to the Library of Congress, an office that would later become the Poet Laureate...In 1970, he penned his best-selling novel, __________________________. The book, which was later made into a major motion picture, exposed readers to scenes of violence and nightmarish horror, much as his poetry had done. Though the novel was well-received, Dickey remained devoted to _______________. "

"'Poetry is, I think, the highest medium _______________________________,' he asserted in a 1981 interview. 'It's language itself, which is a miraculous medium which makes everything else that man has ever done possible.'"

"By the end of his life, Dickey had gained fame for his poems and stories of the South and recognition for his Renaissance lifestyle. A _________________________________hero, James Dickey died in ______________ after a long illness in 1997."

READ: "Falling" or "Hunting Civil War Relics"

Guthrie, Kentucky

On the literary map, travel from Atlanta, Georgia, to Guthrie, Kentucky.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Guthrie, Kentucky

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Guthrie, Kentucky

Visit Robert Penn Warren at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Robert Penn Warren was born in Guthrie, Todd County, Kentucky, on April 24, __________. He entered Vanderbilt University in 1921, where he became the youngest member of the group of Southern poets called The Fugitives were advocates of ___________________________ tradition and based their poetry and critical perspective on classical aesthetic ideals."

"Though regarded as one of the best poets of his generation, Warren was better known as a novelist and received tremendous recognition for ___________________, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in _______. As his Southern background was exchanged for a later life spent in _____________, with homes in Fairfield, Connecticut and Stratton, Vermont, Warren's youthful conservatism eventually gave way to more ________ views, both aesthetically and socially."

Listen to "The Nature of a Mirror."

Nashville, Tennessee


On the literary map, travel from Guthrie, Kentucky, to Nashville, Tennessee.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Nashville, Tennessee

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Nashville, Tennessee

Visit Mrs. Steller's Randall Jarrell Gallery.

Visit Randall Jarrell at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the blanks.

"Randall Jarrell was born in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1914. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees from Vanderbilt University. From 1937 to 1939 he taught at Kenyon College, where he met ________________ and __________, and then at the University of Texas. His first book of poems, _________________, was published in ______, the same year he enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He soon left the Air Corps for the army and worked as a control tower operator, an experience which provided _________________."

"Jarrell's reputation as a poet was established in 1945, while he was still ______________, with the publication of his second book, Little Friend, Little Friend, which bitterly and dramatically _______________________________________ of young soldiers. Other volumes followed, all characterized by great technical skill, empathy with the lives of others, and an almost painful sensitivity. Following the war, Jarrell accepted a teaching position at the Woman's College of the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, and remained there, except for occasional absences to teach elsewhere, until his death. Even more than for his poems, Jarrell is highly regarded as a peerless literary essayist, and was considered the most astute (and most feared) poetry critic of his generation."

Read along as you listen to "The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner."

The word “State” in line 1 is capitalized, suggesting a government or nation. In what sense did the gunner fall “into the State”?

What does the last line imply about the condition of the plane and how it landed?

What does it imply about the actualities of war?

Pulaski, Tennessee


On the literary map, travel from Nashville to Pulaski, Tennessee.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Pulaski, Tennessee

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Pulaski, Tennessee

Visit John Crowe Ransom at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the blanks.

"John Crowe Ransom was born in _______ in Pulaski, Tennessee. He received an undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University in 1909, studied as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, and served in the __________________. He became a professor at Vanderbilt and later accepted a position at Kenyon College, where he became founder and editor of The Kenyon Review, and remained there until his retirement in 1959."

"Ransom published three slim volumes of ______________, but after 1927 principally devoted himself to ___________. He was a guiding member of the _________, a group of writers who were wary of the social and cultural changes they were witnessing in the South during the early part of the twentieth century. The Fugitives sought to preserve a traditional aesthetic ideal which was firmly rooted in classical values and forms. As a critic, he had an enormous influence on an entire generation of poets and fellow academics, who subscribed to the doctrines he laid out as the "_______________."

"His ideals were _____________________ and the English metaphysical poetry of the 17th century. He believed in the poetic virtues of ________ and ____________, and the importance of adhering to ______________prosodic techniques of meter, stanza, and rhyme. His own poems are marked by irony and a spare classicism, and a concern with the ______________________________________."

Read “Blue Girls” and "Janet Waking"

This poem gains much of its effect by juxtaposing the innocence of the little girl Janet with her sudden experience of death. What do such words as beautifully, dainty-feathers, and curl suggest about the kind of world Janet understands?







Toward the end of the poem, Ransom moves away from the two earlier worlds to feeling to an attitude of detached, calm wisdom. What does Janet think has happened to Chucky? What do the last two lines tell us about Janet?

Monroeville, Alabama


On the literary map, travel from Pulaski, Tennessee, to Monroeville, Alabama.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Monroeville, Alabama

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Monroeville, Alabama

Visit Harper Lee and Truman Capote at www.SouthernLiteraryTours.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"In small town life and in rural life you know your neighbors. Not only do you know everything about your neighbors, but you know everything about them from the time they came to the country."

Harper Lee, quoted in Mockingbird, A Portrait of Harper Lee by Charles J. Shields.


"Harper Lee lived next door to the cousins Truman Capote came to stay with in her small country town. The Monroeville playmates became, arguably, America's most famous pair of _______________________. The films Capote and Infamous have established them as one of the country's most complex pairings of collaborative investigators who sought the true story behind the brutal Kansas slayings of Capote's In Cold Blood."

"The friendship began on South Alabama Avenue where Harper was raised by her father A.C. Lee, a local attorney who owned the town's newspaper The Monroe Journal. Mr. Lee wrote influential editorials for the Journal and practiced law in the 1903 Courthouse. Capote insisted that he was the model for Dill, Scout's playmate in Mockingbird. In a letter to his friends Alvin and Marie Dewey of August 12, 1960, the author of Breakfast at Tiffany's and Other Voices, Other Rooms wrote: Nelle's book is high on the best-seller list; she has gone home to Monroeville for a month. And yes, my dear, I am Dill."

"Capote was no stranger to best-seller lists either. Monroeville gave him poignant material. Writing ___________________ in 1972, Capote said, 'As a child, I lived until I was ten or so with an elderly spinster relative in a rural, remote part of Alabama. Miss Sook Faulk. She herself was not more than twelve years old mentally, which is what accounted for her purity, timidity, her strange, unexpected wisdom.' He wrote two stories about Sook:_______________and ____________________________. A historical marker in Monroeville now serves as a guidepost for visitors seeking the Faulk house: a plot of land with the remains of a brick foundation near the historic courthouse square."

"The courtroom of the ______________________was meticulously re-created in Hollywood for the film version of _________________________earning Gregory Peck an Academy Award for his portrayal of ___________. Finch was named America's number one cinematic hero by the American Film Institute. Thanks to literary masterpieces by Truman Capote and Harper Lee, Monroeville does not seem remote today, though it preserves the rural life of Mockingbird for the book's generations of admirers. The small town of Capote and Lee has been declared _____________________________________."

Oxford, Mississippi



On the literary map, travel from Monroeville, Alabama, to Oxford, Mississippi.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Oxford, Mississippi

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Oxford, Mississippi

Visit Mrs. Steller's William Faulkner Gallery.

Read about William Faulkner at www.SouthLiteraryTrail.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"I don't like having my private life and affairs available to just any and everyone who has the price of the vehicle it's printed in."

William Faulkner, writing to Malcolm Cowley,

editor of The Portable Faulkner.





"Around Oxford, they called him 'Bill.' Around the world, William Faulkner is called one of America's greatest writers, arguably literary history's most examined and studied author after Shakespeare. In 1977, his friend and fan Eudora Welty reviewed the Selected letters of William Faulkner - a volume of private correspondences that Faulkner would not have wanted to see in print. In her New York Times review, Welty observed, 'No man ever put more of his heart and soul into the written word than did William Faulkner. If you want to know all you can about that heart and soul, ______________________________________________________.' "

"Faulkner's fiction begins and ends in Oxford, a place that exposed him to ______________, ________________________, alleged ghosts and every other imaginable character that a small town can produce. When he was four, around 1901, the Falkner family moved from New Albany to Oxford, the model for 'Jefferson' in his fiction. Oxford's home county, Lafayette, inspired Faulkner's fictional ___________________________ County. It is uncertain how Bill Falkner became William Faulkner. Legend decrees that the Nobel Prize winner, when asked about the spelling of his last name, replied: '_________________________. ' "



Read "The Bear" in your text and answer the questions.




The boy hunts the bear three times, when he is ten, eleven, and fourteen years old. The first hunt divides into several actions, as a kind of prelude to the other hunts. What does Sam teach the boy before the first hunt? How does Sam know the bear is near?


As the boy sees the hound return with a tattered ear and raked shoulder, he imagines a cause far more universal than a bear:"...it was still no living creature, but the wilderness which, leaning for the moment down, had patted lightly once the hound's temerity." Interpret this sentence.


During the second hunt, the boy seems to be on the track of something more than animals. Although the others think he is "hunting squirrels," what is he unconsiously teaching himself?


Sam tells the boy that he will have to "choose." Between what two alternatives must the boy choose? In what sense can a coward be more dangerous than a brave person?


As the boy advances farther into the woods, he realizes that he must abandon not only his gun but also his watch, compass, and stick. What does his abandonment of these things suggest is the real point of his hunting the bear?


By the time the boy is fourteen, what qualifies him as a competent woodsman? What action marks his initiation as a true hunter?


After the first hunt Say says, "We ain't got the dog yet." What kind of dog is needed for the hunt? How does this dog's nature relate to the choice that the boy has had to make?


What has the boy finally acquired from his experiences in the wilderness that is more important than his skill as a woodsman?

Jackson, Mississippi



On the literary map, travel from Oxford to Jackson,Mississippi.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Jackson, Mississippi

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Jackson, Mississippi


Visit Mrs. Steller's Eudora Welty Gallery.

Read about Eudora Welty at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History; then fill-in-the-blanks.


"In 1936 when she was __________________, Eudora Welty published her first short story. ____________________, a collection of stories, followed a few years later. During the 1940s she began to win major literary prizes, including two Guggenheim Fellowships, published two novels and two more collections of stories, and wrote many book reviews for the New York Times. During these years Welty traveled in England, France, and Italy. The 1950s saw a third novel and a fourth collection of stories. In 1964 she published a book for children. "

"During the late 1950s and '60s Welty balanced travel with work and _______________—years that bore fruit in the early '70s with the novels Losing Battles and ______________, the latter earning her the Pulitzer Prize. The collected essays, photographs, and memoirs of Welty's last decades were published to high acclaim, garnering large international audiences. "

"Eudora Welty died on July 23, 2001, at the age of 92."


Read "A Worn Path" in your text and answer the questions.


The phoenix, a mythical bird, proved to be indestructible by rising from its own ashes after consuming itself in flames. Point out two or three incidents in which Phoenix Jackson triumphs over circumstances that threaten her.


How does Phoenix herself prove to be indestructible?


When Phoenix gets the second nickel from the attendant, she goes to buy a paper windmill for her grandson. How does her method of acquiring the nickles contribute emotional force to an important theme - her tireless love for her grandson?


In what sense does Phoenix literally travel a worn path?


How does the phrase refer more generally to her love for her grandson?

Clarksdale, Mississippi


On the literary map, travel from Jackson to Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Clarksdale, Mississippi

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Clarksdale, Mississippi


Visit Tennessee Williams at www.SouthernLiteraryTrail.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"_________ is where you hang your __________." Tennessee Williams

Read more about Tennessee Williams and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Tom 'Tennessee' Williams was born in __________ on Sunday, March 26, 1911, and baptized on June 11 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church by The Reverend Walter Dakin, his grandfather. Reverend Dakin became one of Tom's closest confidantes and a sympathetic ally against his indifferent father Cornelius Williams. Tom was the second child of Cornelius and Edwina Dakin Williams. The couple's daughter Rose, born before Tom on November 19, 1908, was tragically destined for a diagnosis of ________________ at age eighteen. Cornelius worked as a ____________________ until 1918 when he took a job in St. Louis and insisted that his wife and children leave the comforts of the Dakin household - then in Clarksdale - to be with him."

"Rose and Edwina were models for characters in many of ___________________, notably ______________________-which the playwright described as 'a picture of my own heart.' Cornelius also has a counterpart in Menagerie: __________________. Before she settled on Cornelius, Edwina Dakin was a belle with many suitors in Columbus, a classic southern town with a current collection of two hundred antebellum homes. One beau, Gaius Whitfield, used his family mansion Gaineswood in nearby Demopolis to woo her, but he could not compete with the deceptive charms of Cornelius Williams, whose blue-blooded Knoxville lineage proved more attractive to Edwina. "

Stamps, Arkansas

On the literary map, travel from Clarksdale, Mississippi, to Stamps, Arkansas.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Stamps, Arkansas

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Stamps, Arkansas

Visit Maya Angelou at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.


"Maya Angelou was born _____________________________ in _______________________________, on April 4, 1928. She grew up in St. Louis and Stamps, Arkansas."


"She is an author, poet, historian, songwriter, playwright, dancer, stage and screen producer, director, performer, singer, and civil rights activist. She is best known for her autobiographical books, especially _________________________________ (1969), which was nominated for the National Book Award."


Read “Alone.”

What is the refrain?

McAlester, Oklahoma

On the literary map, travel from Stamps, Arkansas, to McAlester, Oklahoma.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to McAlester, Oklahoma

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to McAlester, Oklahoma

Visit John Berryman at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.


"John Berryman was born _______________________ in McAlester, Oklahoma, in 1914. He received an undergraduate degree from Columbia College in 1936 and attended Cambridge University on a fellowship. He taught at Wayne State University in Detroit and went on to occupy posts at Harvard and Princeton. From 1955 until his death in 1972, he was a professor at the University of Minnesota."

Read "The Ball Poem" and answer the questions.

What is the boy now, who has lost his ball,
What, what is he to do? I saw it go
Merrily bouncing, down the street, and then
Merrily over—there it is in the water!
No use to say 'O there are other balls':
An ultimate shaking grief fixes the boy
As he stands rigid, trembling, staring down
All his young days into the harbour where
His ball went. I would not intrude on him,
A dime, another ball, is worthless. Now
He senses first responsibility
In a world of possessions. People will take balls,
Balls will be lost always, little boy,
And no one buys a ball back. Money is external.
He is learning, well behind his desperate eyes,
The epistemology of loss, how to stand up
Knowing what every man must one day know
And most know many days, how to stand up
And gradually light returns to the street
A whistle blows, the ball is out of sight,
Soon part of me will explore the deep and dark
Floor of the harbour . . I am everywhere,
I suffer and move, my mind and my heart move
With all that move me, under the water
Or whistling, I am not a little boy.



What does the speaker say one must do in the face of loss?



What does line 19 suggest will then happen?



At the end of the poem, he says that “part” of him will explore the bottom of the harbor. What do you think that part of him is looking for here?



How do you interpret the last four lines of the poem?

Indian Creek, Texas



On the literary map, travel from McAlester, Oklahoma, to Indian Creek, Texas.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Indian Creek, Texas

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Indian Creek, Texas

Visit Katherine Anne Porter.

Read "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall" in your text and answer the questions.


What connotations does the name "Weatherall" have in the context of the story?


How is it a suitable name for the main character, Granny?


Cite examples to show that life has not been "too much for her."


Identify the following characters and tell whether they are related primarily to Granny's "present" or to her "past": Cornelia, John, Doctor Harry, George, Father Connolly.


What roles do these characters play in Granny's life and her thoughts?


"She had spent so much time preparing for death there was not need for bringing it up again." Explain how, in light of the end of the story, this sentence is not true.


Why is the jilting so important to Granny? How is the jilting related to the last paragraph of the story?


In the story, figurative language is ofen used to convey Granny's state of mind: for example, to Granny, "Doctor Harry floated like a balloon around the foot of the bed." Find three other examples of figurative language used to convey a state of mind.

Salinas, California

On the literary map, travel from Indian Creek, Texas, to Salinas, California.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Salinas, California.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Salinas, California


Visit John Steinbeck at NobelPrize.org

Read "Flight" and answer the questions.

Describe three impressions that you get of the Torres family life from the first few paragraphs. Support each impression with details from the story.



What admirable qualites do you find in Mama Torres?



At the beginning of the story Pepe is described as "fragile" and "lazy." How are his appearance and behavior different when he returns from Monterey?



How does Pepe's behavior during his flight support his mother's ideas of what changes a boy into a man?



Is the story more, or less, interesting because you never see the pursuers or know anything about them?



What is the first indication of real danger?



How does Pepe's gradual shedding of his father's possessions parallel the increasing hopelessness of his situation?



How doe Pepe's flight resemble that of an animal?



What does he do during his flight to retain his dignity as a human being?



Does the ending of the story satisfy you? Why or why not?




Travels with Steinbeck:

To see America personally, John Steinbeck traveled with his poodle Charley around the United States. Travels with Charley: Search of America is a travelogue documents the driving trip and answers many questions he had going into his journey - the main one being "What are Americans like today?". Steinbeck started his travels in Long Island, New York, outlined the border of the United States, going all throughout the North, through the Pacific Northwest, down into his native Salinas Valley, across to Texas, up through the Deep South, and then back to New York. His whole trip encompassed nearly 10,000 miles. Many people today read his popular book and replicate his trip. Here is an interactive map one.

Carmel, California


On the literary map, travel from Salinas to Carmel, California.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Carmel, California.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Carmel, California


Visit Robinson Jeffers at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"When his family moved to California, Robinson Jeffers, at age sixteen, entered Occidental College as a junior. He graduated at eighteen. After marrying in 1913, he and his wife settled in ____________________________."

"In 1919, Jeffers began building a stone cottage overlooking Carmel Bay which he called _______________, after the craggy knoll, or 'tor' on which it was built. Nearby, Jeffers also built a forty-foot stone structure—Hawk Tower—selecting and laying each stone himself.
Both the Tower and the coastal landscape figure strongly in Jeffers’s poetry, much of which celebrates the awesome beauty of the hills and ravines that plunged into the Pacific. His poetry often reveals his belief in the dramatic, and often tragic, power of nature."

Read "Carmel Point."

Now read "Evening Ebb" and answer the questions.

The ocean has not been quiet for a long while; five night- herons
Fly shorelong voiceless in the hush of air
Over the calm of an ebb that almost mirrors their wings.
The sun has gone down, and the water has gone down
From the weed-clad rock, but the distant cloud-wall rises. The ebb whispers.
Great cloud-shadows float in the opal water.
Through rifts in the screen of the world pale gold gleams and the evening
Star suddenly glides like a flying torch.
As if we had not been meant to see her; rehearsing behind
The screen of the world for another audience.


The first eight lines of the poem picture an evening on the seashore as one of special beauty and repose. a. What movement of the sea does Jeffers refer to in line 3? b. What sight does the sea "mirror"?




The evening star, the earliest star to appear in the evening, suddenly becomes visible. a. What is the "screen of the world" through which the evening star gleams? b. What does the "screen" imply about human knowledge and its limitations?





What phrase in line 10 suggests that there is much in the universe apart from humanity?

Berkeley, California


On the literary map, travel from San Francisco to Berkeley, California.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Berkeley, California.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Berkeley, California.

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed
by madness, starving hysterical
naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at
dawn looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient
heavenly connection to the starry
dynamo in the machinery of night . . .

Allen Ginsberg, "Howl"

Read A Brief Guide to the Beat Poets at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Beat poetry evolved during the _______ in both New York City and on the west coast, although _________________ became the heart of the movement in the early 1950s. The end of World War II left poets like Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Gregory Corso questioning _________________________________."

"These poets would become known as the ___________ generation, a group of writers interested in changing consciousness and defying conventional writing."

"The battle against social conformity and literary tradition was central to the work of the Beats. Among this group of poets, hallucinogenic drugs were used to achieve higher consciousness, as was meditation and Eastern religion. Buddhism especially was important to many of the Beat poets; Gary Snyder and _________________ both intensely studied this religion and it figured into much of their work."

"Allen Ginsberg's first book _____________________________ is often considered representative of the Beat poets. In 1956 Lawrence Ferlinghetti's press City Lights published Howl and Ferlinghetti was brought to trial the next year on charges of __________. In a hugely publicized case, the judge ruled that Howl was not obscene and brought national attention to Ginsberg and the Beat poets."

"Besides publishing the Pocket Poets Series, Ferlinghetti also founded the legendary San Francisco bookstore _____________. Still in operation today, it is an important landmark of Beat generation history. Several of the surrounding streets have been renamed after Beat poets as well, commemorating their important contribution to the cultural landscape of San Francisco."

San Francisco, California


On the literary map, travel from Carmel to San Francisco, California.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to San Francisco, California.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to San Francisco, California


Visit Mrs. Steller's Jack London Gallery.
Read about the life of Jack London.

Read "To Build a Fire" and answer the questions.


Where in the story does the man first become aware of the danger of the cold?


How des this awareness affect his later actions?


If he had realized the danger earlier and more fully, what might he have done differently?


In introducing the man, London describes him as being "quick and alert," but "without imagination" How does this lack of imagination mislead him?


The dog's equivalent of human imagination is evidently its instinct. How does the dog's instinct enable it to escape the man's fate?


What does the story suggest about the kind of individual who is most likely to survive challenges and trials?


What does London feel is more important - physical strength or an awareness of the possible consequences of one's action? Explain.


What does the story suggest about humanity's place in nature?


What purpose do you think the author might have had in not giving his character a name?

Seattle, Washington

On the literary map, travel from Berkeley, California, to Seattle, Washington.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Seattle, Washington.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Seattle, Washington.

Visit Theodore Roethke at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Theodore Roethke was born in Saginaw, Michigan, in _________________. As a child, he spent much time in the greenhouse owned by his father and uncle. His impressions of the natural world contained there would later profoundly influence the subjects and imagery of his verse. He taught at various colleges and universities, including Lafayette, Pennsylvania State, and Bennington, and worked last at the University of __________________________, where he was mentor to a generation of Northwest poets that included David Wagoner, Carolyn Kizer, and Richard Hugo. Theodore Roethke died in _________________________. "

Read "My Papa's Waltz."

(Note: These are memories of a rough father -- but not a poem about child abuse.)

The whiskey on your breath
Could make a small boy dizzy;
But I hung on like death:
Such waltzing was not easy.

We romped until the pans
Slid from the kitchen shelf;
My mother's countenance
Could not unfrown itself.

The hand that held my wrist
Was battered on one knuckle;
At every step you missed
My right ear scraped a buckle.

You beat time on my head
With a palm caked hard by dirt,
Then waltzed me off to bed
Still clinging to your shirt.

Now follow along with the poem as you listen to “My Papa’s Waltz.”


Read "Elegy for Jane" and answer the questions.

(Roethke: for my student, thrown by a horse)

I remember the neckcurls, limp and damp as tendrils;
And her quick look, a sidelong pickerel smile;
And how, once startled into talk, the light syllables leaped for her,
And she balanced in the delight of her thought,
A wren, happy, tail into the wind,
Her song trembling the twigs and small branches.
The shade sang with her;
The leaves, their whispers turned to kissing,
And the mould sang in the bleached valleys under the rose.
Oh, when she was sad, she cast herself down into such pure depth,
Even a father could not find her:
Scraping her cheek against straw,
Stirring the clearest water.
My sparrow, you are not here,
Waiting like a fern, making a spiney shadow.
The sides of wet stones cannot console me,
Nor the moss, wound with the last light.
If only I could nudge you from this sleep,
My maimed darling, my skittery pigeon.
Over this damp grave I speak the words of my love:
I, with no rights in this matter,
Neither father nor lover.

What is an elegy?

The first five lines give a sense of Jane as a person. What do such phrases as “quick look,” “light syllables,” and “delight of her thought” tell of her personality?

Roethke often expresses complicated feelings through images drawn from simple aspects of nature. Give an example here.
In the poem’s last stanza, what element complicates the poet’s feelings for Jane?

Hailey, Idaho

On the literary map, travel from Seattle, Washington, to Hailey, Idaho.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Hailey, Idaho.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Hailey, Idaho.


Visit Ezra Pound at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Ezra Pound is generally considered the poet most responsible for defining and promoting a modernist aesthetic in poetry. In the early teens of the twentieth century, he opened a seminal exchange of work and ideas between British and American writers, and was famous for the generosity with which he advanced the work of such major contemporaries as W. B. Yeats, Robert Frost, William Carlos Williams, Marianne Moore, H. D., and T. S. Eliot. "

"His own significant contributions to poetry begin with his promulgation of _______________, a movement in poetry which derived its technique from classical Chinese and Japanese poetry - stressing__________________________________________ 'composed in the sequence of the musical phrase, not in the sequence of the metronome.' His later work, for nearly fifty years, focused on the encyclopedic epic poem he entitled __________________."


In a Station of the Metro

The apparition of these faces in the crowd; Petals on a wet, black bough.


Question: To what does he compare the faces/ What does the comparison imply about the fragility of human beings? What is suggested by the image of a wet bough?



Fan-Piece, for Her Imperial Lord

O fan of white silk, clear as frost on the grass-blade, You also are laid aside.


Question: What does the title suggest about the identity of the speaker? What do you think has been put aside besides the fan itself?



READ: “The River-Merchant’s Wife”:

Question: The poem is adapted from a Chinese poem by Li T’ai Po. What stage of her life and her husband’s does she refer to in the first section of the poem? What are the emotions suggested by “I grow older”?

Logan, Utah

On the literary map, travel from Hailey, Idaho, to Logan, Utah.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Logan, Utah.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Logan, Utah.

Visit May Swenson at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"May Swenson was born Anna Thilda May Swenson on May 28, 1913 in Logan, Utah. Her parents were ___________________, and her father was a professor of mechanical engineering at Utah State University. English was her second language, her family having spoken mostly Swedish in their home. Influenced early on by ________________, she kept journals as a young girl, in which she wrote in multiple genres."

"Four months before her death, Swenson wrote: 'The best poetry has its roots in the subconscious to a great degree. Youth, naivety, reliance on instinct more than learning and method, a sense of freedom and play, even trust in randomness, is necessary to the ___________________________________.' "

Read about May Swenson as a Utah poet who was an observer of nature. Here, read (or listen to) "April Light."

Prairies of Nebraska


On the literary map, travel from Logan, Utah, to Red Cloud, Nebraska.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Red Cloud, Nebraska

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Red Cloud, Nebraska


Visit Mrs. Steller's Willa Cather Gallery.

Read the timeline of Willa Cather's life.

Take a virtual tour of her childhood home.

Here are on-line texts of her novels.

Read "The Sculptor's Funeral" and answer the questions.


What important character is introduced in the first paragraph of the story?



How is his importance stressed?



Does Cather's treatment of the characters who appear at the beginning of the story strike you as sympathetic or unsympathetic?



What seems to be Cather's attitude toward the boys waiting at the train station?



What words and images does she use to describe them?



After the train arrives, the story is told primarily through the point of view of Henry Steavens. How doe the use of this point of view influence your attitude toward the other characters?



Give three examples of Steaven' reactions and tell how they influence your reactions.



What does Jim Laird's remark, "A burnt dog dreads the fire," imply about Harvey Merrick's early years?



How does Jim Laird influence your feelings about Harvey Merrick and the town?



One theme in this story is the struggle of the sensitive individual against a hostile environment. Considering what you learn about Harvey Merrick in the course of the story, why do you think he was able to triumph over his environment?

St. Louis, Missouri

On the literary map, travel from Red Cloud, Nebraska, to St. Louis, Missouri.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to St. Louis, Missouri

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to St. Louis, Missouri

Visit Thomas Stearns Eliot at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Thomas Stearns Eliot, most dominant figure in poetry and literary criticism in the English-speaking world during his time, was born in Missouri in _______________. T. S. Eliot lived in St. Louis during the first eighteen years of his life and later attended Harvard University."

"In London where he later worked, Eliot came under the influence of his contemporary _________________________, who recognized his poetic genius at once, and assisted in the publication of his work in a number of magazines, most notably 'The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock' in Poetry in ______."

"The poem is an examination of the tortured psyche of the prototypical modern man—overeducated, eloquent, neurotic, and emotionally stilted. Prufrock, the poem’s speaker, seems to be addressing a potential lover, with whom he would like to 'force the moment to its crisis' by somehow making a proposal of love to this woman. Prufrock, however, knows too much of life to 'dare' an approach to the woman. In his mind he hears the comments others make about his inadequacies, and he chides himself for 'presuming' emotional interaction could be possible at all."

"The poem moves from a series of fairly concrete physical settings—a cityscape (the famous 'patient etherised upon a table') and several interiors (women’s arms in the lamplight, coffee spoons, fireplaces)—to a series of vague ocean images conveying Prufrock’s emotional distance from the world as he comes to recognize his second-rate status ('I am not Prince Hamlet’). 'Prufrock' is powerful for its range of intellectual reference and also for the vividness of character achieved."

Read “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.”

One reason that Eliot’s poem may seem difficult at first is that he uses a stream-of-consciousness technique. What is stream-of-consciousness?


Eliot’s poems are noted for their startling similes and metaphors. List three examples.

Hannibal, Missouri


On the literary map, travel from St. Louis to Hannibal, Missouri.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Hannibal, Missouri

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Hannibal, Missouri

Visit Mrs. Steller's Mark Twain Gallery.

Read Mark Twain's biography.

Here are works by Mark Twain. Write about one that you have already read.

Here is his most famous home, located in Connecticut.

Take the virtual tour by clicking on a room on the map. Explain your favorite room.

St. Paul, Minnesota


On the literary map, travel from Hannibal, Missouri, to St. Paul, Minnesota.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to St. Paul, Minnesota

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to St. Paul, Minnesota

Visit Mrs. Steller's F. Scott Fitzgerald Gallery.

Read his biography so that you will be familiar with him when we read The Great Gatsby.

Read "Bernice Bobs Her Hair," a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald that is "a witty snapshot of the trials of a young debutante and her transformation into a jazzy flapper."

Madison, Wisconsin


On the literary map, travel from St. Paul, Minnesota, to Madison, Wisconsin.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Madison, Wisconsin

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Madison, Wisconsin

What is his featured play discussed here at Thornton Wilder Society?


In 1964, this play was adapted to Broadway as what famous musical?


What is a farce?


Summarize the information presented about his novel The Bridge of San Luis Rey.

Glencoe, Illinois

On the literary map, travel from Madison, Wisconsin, to Glencoe, Illinois.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Glencoe, Illinois

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Glencoe, Illinois

Visit Archibald MacLeish at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Archibald MacLeish was born in __________, Illinois, on May 7, ________. First educated at Hotchkiss School, MacLeish later studied at Yale and _______ Law School, where he was first in his class. Although he focused his studies on law, he also began writing poetry during this time."

"Throughout his work, MacLeish was interested in the idea of ___________________ through time. Whether his poems stress detached artistic creativity, active involvement, or philosophic thought, they present life as ___________________. However, as his later work insists, the human situation demands that people at least search for _____________ and an understanding of themselves."

Read "The End of the World"

Quite unexpectedly, as Vasserot
The armless ambidextrian was lighting
A match between his great and second toe,
And Ralph the lion was engaged in biting
The neck of Madame Sossman while the drum
Pointed, and Teeny was about to cough
In waltz-time swinging Jocko by the thumb---
Quite unexpectedly the top blew off:

And there, there overhead, there, there hung over
Those thousands of white faces, those dazed eyes,
There in the starless dark the poise, the hover,
There with vast wings across the cancelled skies,
There in the sudden blackness the black pall
Of nothing, nothing, nothing --- nothing at all


What is the oxymoron in line 2?


Why is “there” repeated so often?


What aspects of the circus scene described in the first stanza apply to human life in general?


Why is the circus an appropriate metaphor for life?


A familiar name for a circus tent is “the big top.” What event is suggested by line 8?


What does the audience see when it looks up at “the canceled skies”?


What is the audience’s reaction?


Who might this audience be?

Chicago, Illinois

On the literary map, travel from Glencoe to Chicago, Illinois.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Chicago, Illinois

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Chicago, Illinois

Visit Carl Sandburg at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Carl Sandburg was born in Galesburg, Illinois, on January 6, 1878. His parents, August and Clara Johnson, had emigrated to America from the north of ___________. After encountering several August Johnsons in his job for the railroad, the Sandburg's father renamed the family. The Sandburgs were very poor; Carl left school at the age of thirteen to work odd jobs, from laying bricks to dishwashing, to help support his family. At seventeen, he traveled west to Kansas as a hobo. He then served eight months in Puerto Rico during the Spanish-American war. While serving, Sandburg met a student at _______________, the small school located in Sandburg's hometown. The young man convinced Sandburg to enroll in Lombard after his return from the war. After graduation and later as a poet, Sandburg became known for his free verse poems 'celebrating ___________ and __________ America, American __________ and __________, and the American ___________ people.'”

READ “Chicago.”

In writing about Chicago, Sandburg uses personification, a figure of speech in which something nonhuman is given human qualities. (a) In the first section of the poem, what words and phrases give Chicago human qualities? (b) What phrases give the city human occupations?



The “personality”” of Chicago suggests a complex industrial city. (a) What do lines 10-11 suggest are its chief strengths? (b) What are its weaknesses?



What final evaluation does the poem make? How is line 21 important to that evaluation?



READ “Prayers of Steel.” Sandburg uses steel as a symbol for the modern industrial age. (a) According to lines 3-4, what function does steel serve in modern society? (b) What contrasting function is presented in the second half of the poem?




READ “Grass.” Austerlitz, Waterloo, Gettysburg, Ypres, and Verdun were all sites of great battles. What power, represented by grass, does Sandburg pose against the significance of such events?



What does the phrase “Shovel them under” suggest about the poet’s attitude toward these events?

Chicago, Illinois

On the literary map, you are still in Chicago, Illinois.

Visit Gwendolyn Brooks at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the blanks.

"Gwendolyn Brooks was born in Topeka, Kansas, in 1917 and raised in Chicago. She is the author of more than twenty books of poetry."

"Gwendolyn Brooks was named Poet Laureate for the state of Illinois in _____. She lived in Chicago until her death in ______________."

LISTEN to “We Real Cool.”

What does she say about this poem being included in so many anthologies of poetry?



How did she write this poem and what did the poem say about her thinking?



Take a Poetry Walking Tour of Chicago.

Chicago, Illinois

On the literary map, you are still in Chicago, Illinois.

Visit Shel Silverstein at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Shel Silverstein was born on September 25, ________ in Chicago, Illinois, and began writing and drawing at a young age. He became a cartoonist, playwright, poet, performer, recording artist, and Grammy-winning, Oscar-nominated songwriter."

"Silverstein is best known as the author of iconic books of prose and poetry for young readers. His works include such modern classics as Lafcadio: The Lion Who Shot Back (1963), The Giving Tree (1964), A Giraffe and a Half (1964), The Missing Piece (1976), and The Missing Piece Meets the Big O (1981). His immensely popular poetry collections are Where the Sidewalk Ends, a 1974 Michigan Young Readers Award winner; A Light in the Attic, recipient of the School Library Journal Best Books Award in 1982; Falling Up (1996); and Don’t Bump the Glump! And Other Fantasies, which was originally published in 1963 and reissued in 2008. Runny Babbit, a posthumous poetry collection of spoonerisms, was conceived and completed before his death."

"Silverstein’s books, which he also ___________ , are characterized by a deft mixing of the sly and the serious, the macabre, and the just plain silly. His unique imagination and bold brand of humor is beloved by countless adults and children throughout the world. He died in May _________________."

Read "If the World Was Crazy"

Read "Mr. Grumbledump's Song"

Read "Sick"

Read "Where the Sidewalk Ends"

Springfield, Illinois

On the literary map, travel from Chicago to Springfield, Illinois.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Springfield, Illinois

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Springfield, Illinois

Visit Edgar Lee Masters at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Edgar Lee Masters was born in Garnett, Kansas, on August 23, 1868, but soon after his birth his family moved to Lewistown, Illinois, the town near Springfield where Masters grew up. His youth was marred by his father's financial struggles with a faltering law practice and __________________________________________. Masters attended Knox College for a year but was then forced by the family's finances to withdraw and continue his studies privately. He was admitted to the bar in 1891, and he moved to Chicago in 1892, where he found a job collecting bills for the Edison Company. He gradually built a successful law practice, and for eight years he was the partner of _____________________. In 1898 he published his first collection, _____________________________, and married. His first books, some of which were published under pseudonyms, showed strong influences from the English Romantic poets and _____________________. "

"During this time Masters considered writing a novel about the relationships of people in a small Illinois town. After reading J. W. Mackail's __________________________ , Masters felt the challenge to adopt the idea for his novel into this form, combining free verse, epitaph, realism, and cynicism to write ____________________________________ , a collection of monologues from the dead in an Illinois graveyard. The book was wildly successful, going through several editions rapidly and becoming one of the most popular books of poetry in the history of American literature."

Read “George Gray.”
Read “Lucinda Matlock.”
Read “Fiddler Jones.”

How does the sculpture on George Gray’s grave – a boat at rest in a harbor – symbolize his life?



Why is madness preferable to a life without meaning? What is George Gray’s attitude toward life now?



How would you characterize Lucinda Matlock’s life? Was it ordinary or unusual? Happy or unhappy?



Who are the “sons and daughters” Lucinda addresses at the end of the poem? Why does she call them “degenerate”? Contrast their attitude toward life with her own.



How is Fiddler Jones different from the other farmers in the community? He gives several examples of the way different people may view the same thing. What distinguishes his view of life?



Why do you think Fiddler Jones has “not a single regret”?

Detroit, Michigan

On the literary map, travel from from Springfield, Illinois, to Detroit, Michigan.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Detroit, Michigan

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Detroit, Michigan

Visit Robert Hayden at www.Poets.org and fill-in-the-blanks.

"Born Asa Bundy Sheffey in ___________, Robert Hayden was raised in a poor neighborhood in Detroit. He had an emotionally tumultuous childhood and was shuttled between the home of his parents and that of a foster family, who lived next door. Because of impaired vision, he was unable to participate in sports, but was able to spend his time reading. In 1932, he graduated from high school and, with the help of a scholarship, attended Detroit City College (later Wayne State University). "

"Hayden published his first book of poems, Heart-Shape in the Dust, in 1940. He enrolled in a graduate English Literature program at the University of Michigan where he studied with W. H. Auden. Auden became an influential critical guide in the development of Hayden's writing. In ___________, he became the first black American to be appointed as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress (later called the Poet Laureate). He died in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in ____________."

Listen to "Soledad" and read "Those Winter Sundays."

What kind of imagery is central to the poem?


How is this imagery related to the emotional concerns of the poem?


How do the subsidiary images relate to the central images?


From what point in time does the speaker view the subject matter of the poem?


What has happened to him in the interval?



A SIDEWALK: "In Ann Arbor, Michigan, Hayden lived at 1201 Gardner Avenue, not far from campus; however, his severe nearsightedness made it impossible for him to drive, or even walk the rutted sidewalks to work. As a result, Hayden regularly took the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority's #5 bus that ran along Packard Street. Surrounded by fellow riders who surely recognized him by his inimitable coke-bottle glasses, Hayden was left undisturbed, though watched with wonderment about what lines he might be silently composing in his mind. Sitting or standing, not reading and unable to observe the scenery rushing by, he remained in quiet contemplation."

Clyde, Ohio

On the literary map, travel from Detroit, Michigan, to Clyde, Ohio.

Calculate:

# _____________ Miles to Clyde, Ohio.

$ _____________ Cost for Gasoline to Clyde, Ohio.

Read about in your text or at Sherwood Anderson. His most famous work is Winesburg, Ohio .


Now read "Sophistication" and answer these questions:

"Sophistication" is a story of two people caught between adolescence and maturity. George and Helen strain toward a new awareness of life while they are still bound to the familiar life of Winesburg. What reasons are given in the fourth paragraph for George's "new sense of maturity"?




The fifth paragraph describes the moment of sophistication, when a person first takes "the backward view of life." Anderson uses the image of a passing procession to suggest George's vision of the passing of time. What image does the author use to suggest the feelings of helplessness and uncertainty that accompany sophistication?




The author describes youth as a struggle between two forces: "the warm unthinking little animal" and "the thing that reflects and remembers (Adventures in American Literature 466). Find a few instances in the story of the sturggle between these two forces. What do you think Anderson means by this conflict?




At the end of the story, what do George and Helen gain from their silent evening together that "makes the mature life of men and women in the modern world possible"? What do you think George and Helen give up of their youth to gain this new-found sophistication?