Sue D. Burton's Little Steel is a poem of praise and lament. It praises two steelworkers who took a stand during an infamous 1937 strike at Republic Steel in Burton's hometown, Massillon, Ohio. It laments the refusal of others to take a stand against injustice or violence, in the community, in the family. The poem is the story of Massillon itself, once a thriving "company town," now -- in the aftermath of the mill's closing -- struggling to rejuvenate itself. It weaves the poet's voice (sometimes passionate, sometimes ironic or edgy) with testimony from a number of sources: newspapers, oral history interviews, imagined interviews (St. Dymphna, Patroness of Sleepwalkers, whose national shrine is at the Massillon State Hospital).
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About the Author
Sue D. Burton has been awarded the Two Sylvias Press Poetry Prize (BOX, 2018), Fourth Genre’s Steinberg Prize, and a Vermont Arts Council grant. Her poetry has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Blackbird, Green Mountains Review, Mudlark, New Ohio Review, and Shenandoah. She apprenticeship-trained as a physician assistant at the Vermont Women’s Health Center and has an MFA in Writing from Vermont College.