I admit it — I have a tendency to feel jaded. So if someone were to tell me that Brenda Hillman spent the last 17 years writing four books of poetry, one for each of the elements — land, air, water, and fire — I might brush the work aside. I might think that the project sounded cheesy, cliché, not for me. But I would be wrong, because the lush, sidelong, textured poems in Hillman's stunning new book Seasonal Works with Letters on Fire refuse simplicity. This book — the final exploration of the fourth element, fire — dances and leaps.
It's been nearly three years since Egyptians rose up against autocratic rule and one fact of life there hasn't changed. Most Egyptians are poor and they're getting poorer. Economic social justice was a big demand of protesters in 2011 and then again this summer. That's when massive crowds took to the streets leading to the ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi. And economists say if Egypt's new leaders don't do something to address the country's poverty problem, they'll face similar unrest.
Cool winds are bringing relief to nearly 10 million residents of the northern Chinese city of Harbin, where thick smog caused schools, airports and businesses to shutter their doors earlier this week. Residents were ordered to remain indoors. At the pollution’s worst, visibility was only 65 feet.
The smog coincided with the first day residents fired up their heating systems in a city known for its cold temperatures and ice festivals.
Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 1:50 pm
A DNA test has confirmed that the biological parents of Little Maria are a Roma couple living in Bulgaria.
Maria, you might remember, was taken from Christos Salis and his wife, Eleftheria Dimopoulou, because police said the child was too fair to be the Greek Roma couple's daughter. The two were charged with abducting a child, but they maintained that they had adopted Maria from another Roma couple in Bulgaria.
Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 12:39 pm
When I make a wrong turn, the woman's voice in my GPS says, "Route recalculation." Then she tells me how to get back on track.
How I wish this electronic tool could be adapted for men whose wives have breast cancer.
Imagine a device that would help us correct course when we try our best to support the women we love — and inevitably mess up. As a breast cancer husband who did just about everything wrong when my wife was diagnosed, I would have been very grateful for a little back-seat driving.
Imagine buying a genuine Pablo Picasso painting valued at $1 million — and paying only $135.
That's the prize if you win the "1 Picasso for 100 Euros" raffle Sotheby's is currently putting on. It's the first time a Picasso has been offered as a raffle prize, and while 100 euros (about $135) isn't cheap for a raffle ticket, at one in about 50,000, your chances of winning are a lot better than the megalotteries a lot of people enter.
Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 12:37 pm
A subcontractor that built a portion of the HealthCare.gov website that's now working relatively well is being promoted to oversee a thorough revamping of the entire glitch-prone portal, and work will be done by the end of next month, the White House says.
Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 8:32 am
San Francisco's Mission District is a cultural crossroads for food, where Mexican bodegas and burrito shops meet gourmet bakeries and cutting-edge California cuisine. It's also home to a kitchen where some of the most promising food startups in the region are getting a boost.
When 52-year-old Alicia Villanueva migrated to San Francisco from Mexico in 2001, she began preparing tamales at home to make a living. She found clientele for her authentic, quality food easily, but says that she struggled to grow the business.