Anti-Immigrant Hysteria: Then and Now

The black-and-white photo below pictures a moment in theĀ  round-up of immigrants in America 100 years ago. The suspicious ‘outsiders’ are white-skinned people from southern and eastern Europe — Italians, Jews, Poles, Russians, Greeks, Serbs, Ukrainians, Lithuanians. The mass round-up … Continue reading →

From “Trump the Musical” — New Poems Online

I have four new poems online this month on, the online poetry journal for which I serve as contributing editor, including a political parody entitled “From ‘Trump the Musical.’” Here’s how the poem begins: From “Trump the Musical” I’m … Continue reading →

Build a Wall? Lessons From 1920

If you wanted to build a wall a hundred years ago, it would have had to be on the Atlantic. I’ll be speaking on my novel “Suosso’s Lane” at Duxbury Library on Sunday, Jan. 29, 2 p.m., my first opportunity … Continue reading →

My Post-Election Poems Published Online

The December issue of, the online poetry journal, published four of my poems in response an election that I can only describe — using the mildest term I can think of — as disappointing. Here’s an excerpt from my … Continue reading →

New Bookstore Hosts Sacco-Vanzetti Program

Boston’s North End, an Italian-American neighborhood for a hundred years, was hopping on a Tuesday evening last week. The neighborhood’s new book store, I AM, hosted a program that included long-suppressed film footage of the Sacco-Vanzetti funeral march, a reading … Continue reading →

Celebrating Independence with John and Abigail Adams

John Adams thought that Independence Day should be celebrated on July 2, not the traditional date given national holiday status, July 4. July Fourth marked the date on which the delegates to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia signed The Declaration … Continue reading →