It’s National Poetry Month here in the USA and to celebrate I’m posting a poem written by one of the Brontë sisters each Monday in April. This week belongs to Anne. Anne Brontë’s works are lesser know than her sisters Charlotte and Emily. And like her sisters she did write poetry. Many of her poems focus on her experiences as a governess which she seems to not have enjoyed! The Brontë sisters didn’t enjoy teaching either in schools or in wealthy folks homes, it seems. And this poem credited by her sister Charlotte as one Anne write while a governess indicates to me how difficult it was to be a governess. Anne’s charges had all the privileges she did not have as a child, and yet they are still grump, unhappy children in an unhappy household. As someone once said, “Mo’ money, mo’ problems.”
What do think of Anne’s poem? Would you read more of her poetry or her novels based on this poem? Let me know what you think in the comments below. and if you have a favorite poem you’d like to share be sure to post a link to it in the comments.
This is a part of my Brontë April. I have dedicated this month to mostly blogging about these three sisters. You can read a bit about it here.
Over the last 20 years or so there has been a love affair with Jane Austen and her novels. Beloved TV adaptations, movies, modern-day settings for movies are all based on her beloved works. But, in spite of the rush to make money off all the 19th century female novelists on the shelf, the fan love seems to be denied the Brontë Sisters. There are a few TV movies based on Charlotte and Emily’s most famous works produced over the last 20 years, but the fans of the Brontë’s just don’t seem to have the same love for them that Jane Austen enjoys. And I’m not really sure why this is so. I think it’s time for the Brontë Sisters to be in the spotlight.
With feminism getting a boost post-election, it seems to me to be a great time to go back and read Jane Eyre. It contains metaphors of the sort of growth and independence that feminism celebrates. It also has a hint of the intersectional feminism too. You know, Bertha. (Bertha gets her own story in Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys which is really good. You should read it, too.) Jane is a strong willed woman who is fascinating and strong and takes no crap from any man (I’m looking at you, St John). So why not a miniseries based on this complicated and emotionally intense novel about a girl overcoming her traumatic childhood and a dicey love affair to come into her own and know her own worth? The movies produced in the past 20 years just don’t do this story justice. Someone needs to call Netflix and give them a heads up about this lack in our lives.
And in this world that seems to be shockedby so many readers reading about a women’s obsessive love of a domineering and cruel man (yeah, I’m looking at you Twilight and your naughty descendant 50 Shadesof Grey) Emily’s Wuthering Heights is absolutely the great grandparent of those modern stories. Wuthering Heights, in its day, was just as shocking to the public as 50 Shades was when it was originally published. Remember all the scandalized think pieces all over the web about women choosing to engage in an S&M relationship in the novel and women all over the world were reading this book and breaking sales records set by the Harry Potter series? The idea of that kind of relationship fascinates readers. And the original Wuthering Heights, should be outselling Twilight and 50 Shades.
Anne. The poor girl is constantly ignored. I’m guilty of ignoring her too. Anne’s books aren’t out in special editions as far as I can tell after looking through Amazon. And according to IMDB, there is only one filmed version of her novel The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. It’s a miniseries produced by the BBC and shown in the USA on PBS, so I’m sure it must be available somewhere out there in the universe on some platform or another. If I find it I’ll let you all know. I just started reading her most well received novel this month. Is she as good a writer as her two sisters? Well, that’s what I’m hoping to find out.
I think what I’m trying to convince you to do, Dear Reader, is read the Brontë Sisters if you have not, and reread them if you have. Watch the mini series and movies based on these women’s works to encourage those that have the power to produce new versions, and possibly better versions of these stories. Help give these sisters the spotlight they deserve.
***UPDATE: I found the BBC 1996 version of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall on Amazon Prime. It isn’t free. But for the low, low price of $4.99 you can own all three episodes. There are also DVDs available for around $15 dollars on Amazon, too.
So what do you think about the Brontë Sisters? Are you fans of their novels? Do you think they need a large and joyful fandom similar to Jane Austen’s? Let me know in the comments below. And if you know where I can get the 1996 BBC version of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall do let me know in the comments!
It’s National Poetry Month here in the USA and to celebrate I’m posting a poem written by one of the Brontë sisters each Monday in April. This week belongs to Charlotte. I’m dedicating April to the Brontë Sisters this year. You can read a little bit about my plans here.
Charlotte Brontë outlived all of her sisters, brother, and mother. So it doesn’t seem to me strange or unusual that she spent more than one evening remembering the past. And the pleasure she seems to find in remembering and shedding a tear or two over those secrets from her heart? Well, who hasn’t done that while watching the sun set in the western sky? Preferably with a lovely glass of wine in hand? Or whiskey? (Is there a word for enjoying the remembrance of sad events or feelings? I tried looking it up using Google but ended up with S&M websites in my search results, and that’s not what I meant, or Charlotte Brontë meant, at all.) In any case, I think this poem captures how it feels at those moments in our lives.
What do you think of Charlotte Brontë’s poem? Would you read more of her poetry or her novels based off of this short piece? Are you a fan of her work including her poetry? And if you have a favorite poem, be sure to share it. Let me know what you think in the comments below. And Happy Reading!
Well, this is a milestone for my blog. It’s my 100th post. And as of today I have 143 followers on WordPress and 5 who follow by email, mostly people I don’t know IRL. So Yay! Thank you to all of you who take the time to read and respond to my posts and memes. I appreciate it. People who live with me have to read my musings and say they like them. It’s like a law or something. But strangers out there on the web have no such obligation. So again, thank you.
My plans for the next 100 posts is a bit unclear right now. I am committed to writing about books, book reviews and other bookish topics. Looking back at previous bookish posts I’ve written it’s And I really feel like I’m just now finding my voice here. So, I’ll be writing more bookish posts to add to the mix along with more book reviews.Thank you again for following and reading my blog.
There are other places on the web where I do bookish things. You can follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy (user name is Loreen). FYI: My Twitter feed is mostly bookish, but I occasionally harass my elected officials there too.
As a part of National Library Week, today is National Bookmobile Day in The United States. And as a lifelong reader and supporter of public libraries, I just want to celebrate my love of bookmobiles and the librarians who run them. For many in rural communities, bookmobiles are the only way to access library books. And I wanted to remember the bookmobile librarian that helped me become the reader I am today.
I grew up in a tiny community in the rural West. It was miles from everywhere. The nearest town with banks, grocery stores, and a library was a 30 minute drive—in good weather. So my first exposure to a library and library books was the bookmobile. The bookmobile came to our house twice a month, every other Wednesday. Mr. Riggs, the librarian, would park the large bus-sized vehicle near our house. In the spring, when our yard was muddy, he would park in the driest spot possible and help my mother lay wooden boards to the door of the bookmobile as a makeshift sidewalk. This kept the mud out of both our house and the bookmobile!
Mr. Riggs really seemed to appreciate my mother’s love of books. I don’t recall him limiting the number of books I checked out. He knew my mother had taught me to love reading and to respect the books. I remember having a stack of 15 or so storybooks at one time checked out from the bookmobile. And I can honestly say I never lost or ruined any of the books I checked out from the bookmobile. Mr. Riggs would also set aside books for Mom. He knew what she loved to read and would make sure to get the books for her. The bookmobile also visited our elementary school. And once as I checked out a book at school, he gave me a book he knew she would want to read. Mom had not been home that day when he visited our house. Now, did the other patrons of the bookmobile receive such consideration? That I don’t know. What I do know is he recognized in my mother a fellow lover of books.
I, of course, didn’t know what a special person he was until after he retired from running our bookmobile. The next fellow (whose name I don’t remember) wasn’t as friendly. He put limits on the number of books I could checkout and, when I was a teenager, tried to stop me from checking out “inappropriate” books that I wanted to read. I continued to visit the bookmobile and check out books, but it wasn’t the same. As I read back over what I’ve written I see that it’s hard for me to differentiate between the man who ran the bookmobile and the bookmobile as a service. And I think that’s okay. Because of his kindness and dedication as a librarian and bookmobile operator, I became a supporter of libraries and librarians. And I passed the love of libraries along to my children because of Mr. Riggs and his bookmobile.
Here is the link to the page where I found The Bookmobile Bad Girl Image.
Do you have a bookmobile or library story? Share it in the comments below. Happy #NationalBookMobileDay, y’all!
It’s National Poetry Month and to celebrate it, I’m sharing one of the Brontë sisters poems each week. Most readers know that the sisters wrote novels and stories, but it may surprise many to find out they also wrote poetry. Here is Emily Brontë’s Warning and Reply.
Death and nature are themes found in Emily’s novels and poetry, it seems. Spoiler alert! This fascination with death and the grave shows up in Wuthering Heights. And the scene that focuses on it directly is something else. (Gothic indeed!)
Are you a fan of the Brontë sisters? Have you read their poetry? What do you think of this poem? Does it make you want to delve deep into Emily’s writing? Let me know in the comments below. And if you have a favorite poem, be sure to share it by leaving a link in the comments.
To shake up things a bit for my blog I’m focusing most of my bookish posts and memes on the Brontë Sisters and their novels. I am planning to write about TV adaptations of their novels and their poetry, too. I think it could be fun for me to write, and hopefully read, about the Brontës.
Here is my list of books I’m planning on reading this month. I’ve not included the books I’m planning on reading during the readathon because I’m still thinking about that final list. I’ll write more about it later on in the month.
The Witches: Salem 1692 by Stacy Schiff. Sigh. I’ve had this on my currently reading list since last October. I like this book, but I needed to set it aside to complete all my reading challenges in the Fall. I want to get back into it, but I’ll probably need to start it all over again.