MTPR

Arts & Culture

Author interviews, food, natural history, poetry, and more from "The Write Question", "The Food Guys", "Field Notes", "Home Ground Radio", "Front Row Center", and "Reflections West".

With calm abandon, Rob Schlegel stands among the genderless trees to shake notions of masculinity and fatherhood. Schlegel incorporates the visionary into everyday life, inhabiting patterns of relation that do not rely on easy categories. Working from the premise that poetry is indistinguishable from the life of the poet, Schlegel considers how his relationship to the creative process is forever changed when he becomes something new to someone else. "The meaning I'm trying to protect is," Schlegel writes, "the heart is neither boy, nor girl." In the Tree Where the Double Sex Sleeps is a tender search for the mother in the father, the poet in the parent, the forest in the human.

Bug Bytes: Insect Farts

Jun 17, 2019
Beaded lacewing
Lucinda Gibson, Museum Victoria [CC BY 3.0 au (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/au/deed.en)]

We’ve all done it. Most of us have joked about it. Even animals do it. Pooting. Tooting. Who ever denied it, supplied it. We all pass gas.

But did you know that insects fart too? And in the case of the beaded lacewing, they lend a whole new meaning to “silent, but deadly.”

'The Food Guys' Praise Their Favorite Kitchen Gadgets

Jun 16, 2019
Rosenfeld Media CC-BY-2.0

The Food Guys, Greg and Jon, praise their favorite kitchen gadgets. 

"Sometimes the job we have to do is often uncomfortable, whether it’s killing a deer to put it out of its pain, or to open it up. It’s kind of that pen too, to open up stories, to open up wounds that need to be reopened to be able to heal properly. I think the knife serves that metaphorical purpose as well." -- CMarie Fuhrman

Honeybee Losses, Colony Collapse, And The Four 'P's

Jun 10, 2019
Muhammad Mahdi Karim

The Food Guys, Jon Jackson and Greg Patent, discuss the recent large-scale disappearance of European honey bees, both wild and managed.  Although the phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder probably peaked in 2007, twelve years later, honeybee losses remain high, thanks to the “four p’s” — poor nutrition, pesticides, pathogens and parasites.

Bug Bytes: Earwigs - Creepy But Caring

Jun 10, 2019
Earwig
David Short [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]

For some people it’s spiders. For others it’s centipedes. But for many people, the answer to “What kind of bug really creeps you out” is earwigs.

Maybe it’s the big pincers at the end of their abdomen? Maybe it’s the fact that it's a bug with the word “ear” in its name. Whatever the case, they’re not high on many people’s lists of lovable insects.

“Some say sharks are the ocean’s anger at us for being in its future,” writes Rob Carney. I say poems are sharks’ way of forgiving us for the soup, the necklaces, the movies, and the mascots. And, let’s not even mention climate change. Rob Carney’s trenchant, probing poems circle around the self, not so much sensing blood but, perhaps even more dangerously, searching for understanding. Part confession, part documentation, part meditation, these smartly crafted lyrics explore how and why we have and have not allowed sharks (metaphors for so many things) to swim into our lives. This is a major effort from a talented poet. —Dean Rader

Bug Bytes: When 'Follow The Leader' Turns Deadly

Jun 3, 2019
Army ants with larvae of a raided wasp nest.
Geoff Gallice [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]

There are many games you probably played as a child. Games that for all intents and purposes were innocent and safe. But who would imagine that a game of “follow the leader” could be deadly?

It certainly can be for army ants. In fact, it can actually result in the death of the entire swarm.

How Spider Webs Can Detect Air Pollution

Jun 2, 2019
Studies are analyzing the chemicals and pollutants caught in spider webs to determine the health of certain environments.
Flickr user PermaCultured [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]

Classic spiral spider webs are made by orb-weaving spiders which weave them deadly traps for flying insects. But orb spider webs are also electrostatically charged, making them perfect for capturing not only prey but pollen and other small pollutants, indicators of an environment's health.

The Trouble With CAFOs

Jun 2, 2019
Industrial chicken coop.
(PD)

The Food Guys detail problems with antibiotic use at concentrated animal feed operations (CAFOs), discuss ethical concerns over treatment of animals, and question the claim that CAFOs are more efficient or cost effective than smaller operations.

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