Brattleboro Literary Festival 2022 Brattleboro Literary Festival 2022

Indigenous people

Saturday, October 15, 2022

Todd Hearon & Matt Miller
Todd Hearon
Todd Hearon
Crows in Eden
Matt Miller
Matt Miller
Tender The River

Todd Hearon’s Crows in Eden is an unflinching look at America’s long history of white terrorism and racial expulsion, told by one who knows southern white culture from the inside. Whether he is uncovering the buried sins of Eden, Tennessee, or documenting the banished black community of Malaga Island, Maine, Todd Hearon seeks no less than to reveal, at last, ‘a history never written down.’ By turns brutally honest and poignantly elegiac, these poems are a vital contribution to the real history of home.” — Patrick Phillips, author of Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America

In Tender the River, Matt Miller captures the history and legacy of the Merrimack River Valley, from the Pennacook, Wamesit, Algonquin, and other indigenous tribes who settled there first, to the European settlers who came with guns and their god to supplant them, to being the birthplace of America’s industrial revolution and first labor movements, to becoming a center of continued immigration, of entrenched nativism, and even multicultural celebration. 

The Merrimack River begins with the confluence of the Pemigewasset and Winnipesaukee rivers spilling from the White Mountains in New Hampshire, then travels down through mill towns like Manchester, Lowell, and Haverhill to finally spit out violently into the Atlantic in the old port (now posh) town of Newburyport. In its journey between those points and as well across the centuries, the Merrimack River Valley has been America in microcosm, many of the nation’s democratic successes and demagogic sins being seeded there.