Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Video: Made in Iowa

In 2011, Webster City, Iowa, experienced a massive economic shift after the town’s large appliance manufacturing plant shut down. But the community refused to let their town die…

November 22, 2019 · 1 Comment

Jason Baldinger: David Ogden Stiers

I can’t come off the night shift schedule
so I get 4 hours sleep a night for a week
drool all day, try not to pass out standing up
god forbid I catch a nap, sleep with a bag of diapers under my head

October 15, 2019 · 1 Comment

James Zogby: Addressing Those Who Have Been Fooled All of the Time

What is needed is a message that speaks to voters across the spectrum, telling them that they are being heard and their needs will be addressed by proposals for economic and social progress that will include and benefit everyone.

September 4, 2019 · 2 Comments

Video: Nora Brown plays two old-time banjo tunes

In a mesmerizing set, musician Nora Brown breathes new life into two old-time banjo tunes: “East Virginia” and “John Brown’s Dream.” An evocative performance paired with a quick history of the banjo’s evolution.

June 22, 2019 · Leave a comment

Sandy Solomon: Poison

The red-faced guard, his scant hair pressed like a wish against his boney pate, sat uniformed at the library gate sternly blocking the un-elect like me.   After just a … Continue reading

May 29, 2018 · Leave a comment

Robert Gibb: Let Us Now Praise Famous Men

“Sharecropper’s Work Shoes” —Photo by Walker Evans, 1936 . The Magritte who took issue with the ordinary Would have tipped them with toes.   Evans, deferential, simply sets them before … Continue reading

April 13, 2018 · Leave a comment

Robert Gibb: Home Scrap Project — Unemployed Steel Worker, 1987-1988

for Ramon Elouza . Close-ups in an eye-level lineup, His photographed faces hung on their wall, Each behind lines of writing,   well I lost my job my wife and … Continue reading

March 28, 2018 · Leave a comment

Jon Tribble: Missionary Barrel

for my father   Like a loose plank on a flatbed Ford skittering and shimmying the bolt free, your life has shaken out the cotton fields in Limestone County, the … Continue reading

December 2, 2017 · Leave a comment

Chris Hedges: Diseases of Despair

The opioid crisis, the frequent mass shootings, the rising rates of suicide, especially among middle-aged white males, the morbid obesity, the obsession with gambling, the investment of our emotional and … Continue reading

September 5, 2017 · 2 Comments

Chris Hedges: How ‘Antifa’ Mirrors the ‘Alt-Right’

Editor’s note: A Berkeley, Calif., rally organized by a right-wing group turned violent Sunday after arrival of a group that carried an anarchist banner. Behind the rhetoric of the “alt-right” … Continue reading

August 29, 2017 · 1 Comment

Jon Tribble: 38,000,000 Reasons

I had left the Colonel and his kitchen behind for good and was detoxing as a movie theater usher in the last of my senior year of high school, but … Continue reading

August 16, 2017 · Leave a comment

Joshua Wilkey: Blessed are the White Trash

I grew up poor. Often, when one reads memoirs or oral histories from folks who grew up where I did — that is, in Appalachia, or in the South, or somewhere … Continue reading

July 9, 2017 · 3 Comments

Video: The Curse and the Jubilee

. Directed by Ivete Lucas and Otis Lee, The Curse and the Jubilee is an intimate, arresting portrait of the cursed Appalachian mining town of Ivanhoe, Virginia. The film captures the … Continue reading

July 9, 2017 · Leave a comment

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