April is National Poetry Month! As part of our month-long celebration, join us as we welcome Jacqueline Allen Trimble and her award winning book of verses: American Happiness.
American Happiness is an eclectic collection of verse from a bold poet of everyday life. Ironically titled, the work addresses everything from the death of parents to racial tension to the encroachment of coyotes into urban spaces.
The title is taken from a poem in the book which considers the kinder, gentler exploits of Sheriff Andy and Deputy Barney during a time when Southern law enforcement was neither universally kind or gentle. Says Trimble, “Barney had one bullet/and no need for a rope./The only burning he did was for his Thelma Lou.”
On her poetic journey, which takes us from the personal to the political, Trimble probes our racial divide. She is by turns compassionate and fierce, cutting at our hypocrisy with the knife of her words and willing us toward our better common humanity.
American Happiness wowed the judges of the Balcones Prize, winning the 2016 award in the poetry category. The judges at Austin Community College said of her work, “Hers is a refreshing voice. Her poetry is intimate and irony-filled.” They add, “Trimble should never be taken lightly — but, darn it, her poems are so often funny.” The Balcones Award follows receipt of the 2016 Seven Sisters Book Award in the poetry category. The Seven Sisters Book Awards recognize “the stories of women and those who tell them.” The award was established by author Lynne Hinton in 2015.