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The Literary Party: Growing Up Gay and Amish in America
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The Literary Party: Growing Up Gay and Amish in America

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  23 ratings  ·  9 reviews
A provocative and eye-opening account of growing up gay and Amish. Poet James Schwartz combines a mixture of poetry, short stories, and essays, to elucidate what it's like to be born gay within an Amish community.

'The Literary Party' is an emotional, touching book with implications that extend to any religion or culture where intolerance is prevalent.

Paperback, 1st, 96 pages
Published July 1st 2011 by inGroup Press (first published June 2nd 2011)
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I enjoyed the author's goodreads profile almost as much as this book. What a fascinating collection of rare and unusual accomplishments.

The book is also a collection, of autobiographical confessions (I mean that in a very positive way); of essays; of political commentary; of details of human interaction, both excruciating and inspiring, or both at the same time; of incredible poetry (some of it doesn't rhyme, but what the heck); of endless "entertainment." You will want to anyway, but you must...more
James Schwartz
Apr 11, 2012 James Schwartz rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  (Review from the author)
I have put my all into these pages!
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Very interesting stuff here. I haven't seen sonnets and other forms done this well in quite a while. A remarkable achievement.
I stumbled across this author by accident while researching the Amish. I am not a regular poetry reader but James changed that. He is my favorite contemporary poet hands down. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys poetry or reading about a slice of Americana.
This beautiful book flies right past any slow-moving-vehicle signs that may be clip-clopping along in its path. A literary party becomes a true celebration of words. Poetry abounds. Essays reach the sky. Everything in the world of this book is not what it seems, so you have to think your way through every word, every character, every happening, every experience, everyplace.

Great writers sometimes write truly great books and are generous enough to share them with the rest of us. Thank you, thank...more
I was pretty disappointed with this book. To be fair, poetry is very subjective, so other readers might really enjoy the poems. I found them amateurish and filled with clichés. It makes sense that the author would rely on overused gay slang from the 90s, since he wasn't exposed to any of that when it was fresh and original. The tired stereotypes were all new to him after leaving the Amish community, so using them in poetry actually underscores the author's inexperience. It didn't impress me, tho...more
I wanted more from this book. The poetry was mediocre. The prose bits, which I was most interested in, were few and far between. If this author were to write a memoir or auto-biography of growing up gay in an Amish community, I would definitely love to read it. But this collection of mish-mash underwhelmed me.
A wonderful and fascinating book. I can't give it 5 stars due to my own mental weakness -- I had to read some of the poems contained in the book about a million times to come really close to understanding them.
An important work, the essays are an absorbing read. The poems sometime experimental although the traditional sonnets are my favorite. A good read for modern poetry lovers & LGBT readers.
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¡ POETRY !: poetry 1 13 Jun 07, 2011 03:51AM  
James Schwartz is a poet and slam performer striving for the simplicity of Cavafy mixed with modern gay wordplay and elements. Schwartz’s poetry / slam material dialogues of GLBTQ issues and affirmations of gay (night) life and love.

He grew up in an Old Order Amish community in MI.
Schwartz’s poetry publications include Poetry Life and Times (UK),Babel: The Multilingual Multicultural Online Journa...more
More about James Schwartz...
Arrival and Departure Milk and Honey Siren Among the Leaves: Queer Male Poets on the Midwestern Experience

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“Poetry is never abandon it is only remixed.” 2 likes
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