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Book Title: The Music of Failure|
Date of issue: January 5th 1986
ISBN 13: 9780918461049
The author of the book: Bill Holm
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 957 KB
Edition: Plains Press
Read full description of the books The Music of Failure:
“The ground bass is failure; America is the key signature; Pauline Bardal is the lyrical tune that sings at the center; Minneota, Minnesota, is the staff on which the tunes are written.” So begins the masterful title piece from Bill Holm’s first book of essays, The Music of Failure. This collection introduced to many the singular vision and voice of literary giant Bill Holm, a writer who had traveled well and widely but came back to his hometown of Minneota—the town of his immigrant Icelandic ancestors—as, in his words, “for all practical purposes a failure.”
What emerges from these pages, and from Holm’s cherished writings over the next two and a half decades, is anything but failure. From his ruminations on life in Minneota, family history, and the “horizontal grandeur” of the Midwestern prairie to a poetry-reading tour of Minnesota nursing homes and an account of a naked man eating lilacs out of his garden, The Music of Failure is a lyrical and surprising compilation that finds Holm mining the stories and places that captivated him and continue to enthrall his many readers.
This 25th anniversary edition includes poignant portraits of Holm and the history of The Music of Failure by Jim Heynen and David Pichaske, along with an essay Holm requested be added to this new edition, “Is Minnesota in America Yet?” With beautiful black-and-white photographs by Tom Guttormsson, The Music of Failure is Bill Holm at both his early and quintessential best, an inimitable and much-missed writer who illuminates our private and common lives through both our quiet victories and our sublime failures.
Read information about the authorBill Holm was an American poet, essayist, memoirist, and musician.
Holm was born on a farm north of Minneota, Minnesota, the grandson of Icelandic immigrants. He attended Gustavus Adolphus College in Saint Peter, Minnesota where he graduated in 1965. Later, he attended the University of Kansas.
Holm won a Fulbright and went to Iceland for a year, which stretched into longer. He continued to visit Iceland so regularly that his friends there helped him find a house in Hofsós. His last book, "The Windows of Brimnes," is about his time in Iceland.
He was Professor Emeritus of English at Southwest Minnesota State University, where he taught classes on poetry and literature until his retirement in 2007. Though Minneota was his home, Holm had traveled the world, teaching English in China, spending summers in Iceland and late winters in Arizona, and visiting Europe and Madagascar.
Holm was a frequent guest on Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie "Home Companion" radio show and some of his poems were included in Keillor's "Writer's Almanac."
Holm was a McKnight Distinguished Artist in 2008, an award that honors Minnesota artists for their life work.
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