THE WRITE STUFF
Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years (W. W. Norton & Company, $23.95)
This beautifully curated anthology features more than 800 poems written by more than 250 poets, such as Ezra Pound, Langston Hughes, E. E. Cummings, Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, Jack Kerouac and Billy Collins. (One example from Mr. Pound, "In a Station of the Metro” (1913) The apparition of these faces in the crowd; Petals on a wet, black bough.
What exactly constitutes a haiku? Is it a 5-7-5 syllable count that takes up exactly three lines? This poetic tome proves the answer is no: a haiku is defined by something deeper, something Billy Collins calls “a special uncountable feature.” Made popular in America by the Beat poets, the form held attraction in its brevity and mysterious power to cause a sudden shift in the reader’s consciousness. As you read this engaging anthology, you’ll notice that, while not every haiku follows the same idealized syllabic and linear form, the poems are, however, united by a focus on a brief moment, a pause in time, an observation that juxtaposes the natural world and the poet’s thoughts.
FOR THE RECORD
Alabama & Friends , the new tribute album honoring country music's most iconic group features some of country music's hottest stars delivering their own unique versions of the group’s classics, including Jason Aldean ("Tennessee River"), Luke Bryan ("Love in the First Degree"), Kenny Chesney ("Lady Down on Love"), Eli Young Band ("The Closer You Get"), Florida Georgia Line ("I'm in a Hurry (And Don't Know Why)"), Jamey Johnson ("My Home's in Alabama"), Toby Keith ("She and I"), Rascal Flatts ("Old Flame") and Trisha Yearwood ("Forever's As Far As I'll Go").
The 11-song collection will also feature two new songs from Alabama: "That's How I Was Raised" and "All American." It's the first taste of new music from the legendary and award-winning group in more than a decade.
Alabama & Friends is now available for digital pre-orders through iTunes. Fans can access the pre-ordering of the album before it hits the streets on by visiting smarturl.it/alabamaitunes.
Special bundle packages are available now via the group's official website www.thealabamaband.com. The "Ultimate Bundle" package consists of a vintage Alabama baseball T, an Alabama & Friends CD and vinyl LP for $50. A vintage T and CD package is also available for $35.
DVD QUICK PICK
He's lost his past. He's lost his roots. But he hasn’t lost his enemies. Frank Riva (played by legendary French icon Alain Delon) is a police officer who follows his instinct and refuses to be deflected from his mission, a man who ignores social convention and flouts rules and regulations, and who lives according to his own deep conviction of right and wrong.
The action is endless in Frank Riva: The Complete Series (MHz Networks).
When this ex-undercover cop is called in from retirement after 25 years of exile to investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding the murder of his brother in a drug sting operation, he finds himself back on the trail of the notorious Loggia crime family, who had put a bounty on his head during the French Connection days. Frank is forced to pick up the pieces of a life he left behind a quarter of a century ago: his old flame Catherine, Nina Rizzi, the daughter he never knew, and Xavier Unger, his former partner, now chief of the Paris police. He must also put together a new team to confront the Loggia gang: Superintendent Lydie Herzog, his nominal superior, the headstrong Captain Hervé Sebastian, and rookie computer whiz Juliette Janssen.