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Janet Ruhe-Schoen

Remains, poetry, Issue 32, September 1, 2015

Janet Ruhe-Schoen was born Feb. 28, 1950 in Allentown, Pa. She has written poetry and other things since childhood and worked for many years as a journalist for magazines and newspapers in the U.S. and in Latin America, where she resided for 13 years. She's written four books of biography and has published poetry and stories in various places. 


Get to know Janet...

Birthday? Feb. 28, 1950
When did you start writing? as a child
When and what and where did you first get published? An article of nine biographical sketches of great Baha'is called "A Love Which Does Not Wait" for the American Baha'i magazine in 1975. 

What themes do you like to write about? I've written several biographical studies of great Baha'is focusing on those who met and were personally galvanized by the founders of the Faith, and who managed to transform (and are still transforming) their worlds by their deeds and spirits.  My most recent publications are Rejoice in My Gladness: The Life of Tahirih, about the 19th Century Iranian feminist poet and martyr; and Champions of Oneness: Louis Gregory and His Shining Circle, featuring the African-American lawyer Louis George Gregory, son and grandson of slaves (and slave-owner!) who was a constant challenger of Jim Crow.
What books and/or stories have most resonated with you as an author? Why? How do these stories and their characters find expression in your work? Some all-time favorite fiction includes Black Snow by Mikhail Bulgakov, a Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin, Jonathan Strange and Mister Norell by Susannah Clarke. Favorite poets include Pablo Neruda and Joy Harjo. There are lots more in many categories! It's a constantly shifting kaleidoscope but I'm most captivated by magic realism and language that sings and goes deep into color worlds.

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