Northern Voices: Forty Years on the Poetry Beat

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Mike Pride

248 Pages,

6 x 9 in, 16 images



April 2023


Books ship the week of April 22nd.

Category: Books Tags: ,


“I am blessed to have known the poets who are the subjects of this memoir,” Mike Pride wrote in his Acknowledgments. “They have enriched my life, and I have done my best to represent them as I knew them.” In two straightforward sentences, Pride captured both the spirit that animates this book and the journalistic sensibilities he brought to writing it. Northern Voices explores the work of six remarkable poets, Donald Hall, Jane Kenyon, Maxine Kumin, Charles Simic, Wesley McNair, and Sharon Olds, all contemporaries, and the ways in which their artistry was shaped by the natural beauties and hard realities of life in New Hampshire. Readers will also meet Seamus Heaney and Hayden Carruth, and come away—just as the author did—enriched by the experience.

In this exquisite, posthumous work, Mike Pride resurrects the lives of poets as if they were saints, highlighting their immortal efforts with his own lyrical prose and riveting storytelling.  Each artist vividly comes to life—and Pride himself, with his humility and grace and genuine sympathy, becomes their equal. A stunning achievement.

Ken Burns

Northern Voices is a gift. Mike Pride has let us in on his long friendships with good poets. His loving attention and goodwill animate his essays. He knew how his poet friends lived in the world and in their poems. His essays will send you forth to read the poems – to Donald Hall, Jane Kenyon, and Charlie Simic, among others. And that’s the highest compliment. Poets live when they are read. Mike Pride knew this. He lives here, too. I only wish there were a sequel, or two.

—Howard Mansfield, author of  Chasing Eden and Dwelling in Possibility

Mike Pride was one of the greatest newspaper editors of his generation, a demanding and generous mentor to hundreds of journalists over his quarter century stewardship of the Concord Monitor. In Northern Voices, we discover something that made Mike so rare—an ear and love for poetry and an appreciation for the values poets share with reporters. Here Mike tells the story of his friendships with the great New England poets, writers whose gifts of precision and storytelling he wanted for his newsroom. The landscape that gave us the poetry of Robert Frost, Donald Hall, Maxine Kumin and others also gave us Pride; what a joy to revisit their genius.

Ann Marie Lipinski, curator of  the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University

Additional information

Weight 1 lbs

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