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Local writers contribute to Ohio River anthology

Dos Madres Press published Riparian: Poetry, Short Prose, and Photographs Inspired by the Ohio River earlier this fall. (Photo Provided)

LOVELAND, Ohio — Riparian, an anthology of poems, short prose and photography inspired by the Ohio River, has been published by Dos Madres Press.

The anthology contains work by 60 artists, including some from this region, and was edited by two of Thomas More University’s distinguished writers: professor Sherry Cook Stanforth and Writer-in-Residence Richard Hague. Riparian, which means situated or dwelling on the banks of a river, is described as creatively contemplating the Ohio River in all of its diversity.

Founded in 2004, Dos Madres Press is a publisher whose award-winning books are known for their artistic integrity and outstanding quality, according to a press release. Riparian’s design and layout were the vision of artist Elizabeth Murphy.

Managing Editor Sherry Cook Stanforth was delighted with the anthology’s cover, layout and overall aesthetic. “Dos Madres Press is a rarity. Most small presses do not engage their authors with such hospitality,” Stanforth said. “I’ve not seen a press do a more beautiful job of using color and whitespace to create book-as-artifact to the delight of our hands, eyes, and minds.”

The Ohio River winds nearly a thousand miles on its course, inspiring contemplation of artifacts, species, place, and the secrets carried by the living and the dead, the press release states. Stanforth notes that the anthology navigates currents of heritage, folklore, community, nature, destruction and healing.

“Riparian promises to stir curiosity and appreciation for our regional artists as well as the wondrous waterway flowing through our communities,” she said. “Our contributors, who range in age from teenager to near-nonagenarian, reflect dedicated storytelling and unique thematic approaches.”

Riparian includes work by writers and artists such as Marc Harshman, George Ella Lyon, Frank X. Walker, Pauletta Hansel, Ron Houchin, Patricia Smith, Scott Hanna, Rhonda Pettit, Kari Gunter-Seymour, Randi Ward, Anna Egan Smucker and many others. The anthology project was supported in part by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio and the National Endowment for the Arts.

A reading and presentation of Riparian will take place at Cincinnati’s historical Mercantile Library on Thursday, Dec. 12. The event is free and open to the public.

Riparian is available online and can also be ordered directly from Dos Madres Press at dosmadres.com/shop/riparian-anthology/ for $25. Small press distribution can be contacted for quantity or reseller discounts: 1-800-869-7553. For more information about this anthology or other Dos Madres Press titles, write to editor@dosmadrespress.com or visit dosmadrespress.com.

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