Writers Voice— in depth conversation with writers of all genres, on the air since 2004.
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Anita Barrows is a poet, translator and therapist working with children with disabilities, including autism. She draws on all these vocations in her debut novel The Language of Birds.
The novel is beautifully written—there’s the poet. It’s about two sisters, one autistic, the other socially isolated, and their struggle to connect with others and their own strengths—there’s the therapist. And, in exploring the world of an autistic character, Barrows translates that world for the reader with sensitivity and compassion.
Both sisters carry the burden of loss. But coming to terms with that loss unlocks the resilience within each of them to open to the love and care of others, and return it.
Anita Barrows has published three poetry volumes. Her translations with Joanna Macy of Rilke’s poetry and prose have been set to music, and nominated for national awards. She teaches at the Wright Institute in Berkeley, California, and maintains an active therapy practice specializing in trauma and developmental disabilities in children, adolescents and adults.
Mary Pipher has been exploring what sustains us as individuals, members of families and of society for well over twenty years. From her classic, Reviving Ophelia, to the last book we spoke with her about, Women Rowing North, Pipher put us in touch with ourselves, our challenges and our resilience.
Her latest book, A Life In Light, is a memoir, where she draws on these challenges and strengths as they applied in her own life.
Drawing from her own experiences and expertise as a psychologist specializing in women, trauma, and the effect of our culture on our mental health, she looks inward to what shaped her as a woman, one who has experienced darkness throughout her life but was always drawn to the light.