Archives for posts with tag: Essays


Z  (Excerpt), An Essay

by Tom Robbins

…It’s the most distant and elusive of our twenty-six linguistic atoms; a mysterious, dark figure in an otherwise fairly innocuous lineup, and the sleekest little swimmer ever to take laps in a bowl of alphabet soup.

 Scarcely a day of my life has gone by when I’ve not stirred the alphabetical ant nest, yet every time I type of pen the letter Z, I still feel a secret tingle, a tiny thrill. This is partially due to Z’s relative rarity: my dictionary devotes 99 pages to A words, 138 pages to P, but only 5 pages to words beginning with Z.

 Then there’s Z’s exoticness, for, though it’s a component of the English language, it gives the impression of having zipped out of Africa or the ancient Near East of Nebuchadnezzzar…Take a letter? You bet. I’ll take Z. My favorite country, at least on paper, is Zanzibar; my favorite body of water, the Zuider Zee. ZZ Top is my favorite band…Had Zsa Zsa Gabor married Frank Zappa, she would have had the coolest name in the world…

Photo: Tom Magliery, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


The above essay taken from Tom Robbins‘ essay, “Write About One of Your Favorite Things” (Esquire, 1996) and collected in Wild Ducks Flying Backward: The Short Writings of Tom Robbins (Bantam, 2005)



Poem by Tamara Madison

In dreams my roads fill
with clear sweet water
flowing gently; there is nothing
to carry, I can swim
beyond the flooded buildings,
through countryside covered
with this vast river
to anywhere I need to go
where warm cool water lifts,
surrounds me; it is silver,
it is gray, it has no color, it shines
like fish, is dark and soft
like sleep.  When I wake
the bell pricks like pins
and I want that water
to fill my veins and carry me
on that river back to sleep.

Note: “River” and two other poems by Tamara Madison will be featured in the upcoming Silver Birch Press release SILVER: An Anthology of Eclectic Poetry & Prose.

Photo: “The Tetons and the Snake River” (1942) by Ansel Adams


Silver Birch Press is pleased to announce its upcoming release SILVER: An Eclectic Anthology of Poetry & Prose, which will feature contributions from a range of established and on-the-rise authors. The poems, short stories, novel excerpts, and essays in the anthology all touch on the theme of silver in some way.

WHY SILVER? The publisher is Silver Birch Press, so silver seems an obvious choice. But the selection  goes deeper. We like this theme because it’s rich, varied, and offers a wide range of possibilities – from second-place finishes, to eating utensils, 25th wedding anniversaries, hair color, swirling fog, coins, bells, jewelry, the tin man, space suits, car bumpers, airplanes, family heirlooms, and on and on.

Release Date: November 15, 2012