"Milldust and Roses is a beautiful tapestry, the substance of which describes an Ohio Valley working-class family from the mid-century onward....The book is formatted like a family albun with wonderful prose snapshots illustrating the town, his growing family, his wife and himself." -Holly Beye
Larry gives an overview of the book:
INSIDE THE NOISE
Yes, there were coal mines, and steel mills, and factories. All of them grinding away at the edge of things–thin shudder of the earth that we lived with, echoing roar of river inside the hills.
It grew inside us.
It was the sound of a furnace under the floor shaking the boards at our feet. Men and women who worked long in it dissolved to deafness, began to speak with hands. Those who lived along its edge learned to turn away.
Birds stood on fence posts, without any necks, or flitted close to the ground.
Open any window, close any door, it was there, a slow and steady rain that fell over everything. It was a death rattle there in our chest, and our lives were clothes hanging out on the line without rest.
Everyone knew but no one spoke.
I grew up in the industrial Ohio River Valley along the green Appalachian hills. I taught 3 years on high school English before returning to grad school at Kent State University and was there with my wife and daughter during the Kent State shootings. I then moved on to teach...
Smith's reading from Long River Home brought the aforementioned magic to life.
Larry Smith is the author of 12 books, a publisher who has put out more than 100 books, a filmmaker who has worked on documentaries about writers James Wright and Kenneth Patchen and a retired English...