Recent Comments

    Age Desires Lyrics

    By Michele Karlsberg–

    Michele Karlsberg: Dolores Maggiore, author of Death and Love at the Old Summer Camp and Love and Lechery at Albert Academy is featured in this issue of the San Francisco Bay Times. I asked Dolores to discuss why she writes. 

    Dolores Maggiore: Why write? Why do I write? Why did I not write? When? And write what?

    These aren’t just the curious questions people ask me at readings. They come as ghostly self-interrogation during the night, and damn! I can’t just give name, rank and serial number.

    It’s torture … when I can’t write … when I couldn’t get a job in writing or publishing straight out of college. I had to write—poetry then—a compulsion. The song in the breeze made me do it. The heady bouquet rolling off the river running by my college lawn awakened my senses, a saturating aromatherapy masking all other sense and non-sense.

    Post college, I came to the Sorbonne in Paris. I breathed poetry. I drank poetry. My friends, speaking the lyrics of other continents, begged for lines from me in French—so easy to feel, to express in French. I demanded lines from myself, to sense the soul. Without poetry, I’d be nothing, right?

    And then crept up the serious 40s, the change of career and re-inventing of life—a psychosocial incline. Again, I had to write, no, not as a thirst, but as obligation: my social work program lacked lesbian resources in its consciousness-raising curriculum. Lesbians, we were not just female versions of gay men. I needed to write of lesbian voices, of lesbian issues, of lesbian literature, of lesbians in 1976–1990. I gave voice to lesbian mothers, struggling to give birth, to hold onto their children, to fight for their rights.

    I’d had a job to do. It was over. I was living without poetry, without spark, without the inspiration to write, except letters to my heroine writers to harass them on a perceived lack of feminist sensitivity. How dare Annie Dillard, and in a commencement address? I received apologetic responses. I wrote newspaper articles on travel and museums because the Hood River News needed them and asked me. I wrote nothing of me.

    Fifteen years later, at retirement’s door, my childhood summer adventures in Maine came to haunt me along with my Sicilian roots, itching to be heard. I answered, and with a great deal of poetic license and humor, wrote my first YA mysteries, for it was a mystery how the plots came to me after sessions on a pulsed electro-magnetic mat and brain-wave entrainment system. Something drove me to write these YA novels.

    Now as I approach the wrapping up of the third book in the trilogy of mystery and thrills, I may be coming to a peak again. Will it be done? This fulfillment of a need?

    Will another compelling need push me down the slope again, demanding a slog upwards? Now that I’m seventy, I may be hearing the siren’s song. Maybe age desires lyrics again. Maybe it’s the Fates, my name for the Kates: the Grays and the de Gutes of the Portland writing world, who inspire and lure—more words, more memories, more songs to come. And I hope to answer the call to raise my voice again in the poetry of youth.

    Author of the Rainbow Award-winning “Death and Love at the Old Summer Camp” and “Love and Lechery at Albert Academy,” Dolores lives in Portland, Oregon, with her wife, Terrie. http://www.maggiorequeeries.com

    Michele Karlsberg Marketing and Management specializes in publicity for the LGBTQI community. This year, Karlsberg celebrates thirty years of successful book campaigns.