In this week’s issue . . .

Wallingford-Swarthmore School District:
School Board Approves
General Fund Budget

By Katie Crawford

Gabriel Savage will join WES as Principal July 1.

The 2018-2019 proposed final General Fund budget was rolled out at the April 23rd meeting of the Wallingford-Swarthmore School Board. Business administrator Martha Kew reminded the board that the total amounts of state and federal revenue contributions to the district remain open to conjecture until their own budgets are settled.

The total budget of $79,927,934 represents a 1.7% increase in overall expenditures. Sixty percent of the proposed budget is allocated for instructional programs; 28% towards support services, which include everything from transportation to guidance; 2% towards student activities; 9% towards debt services; and .5% towards the budgetary reserve.

Eighty percent of revenue for the district will come from local sources for the 2018-2019 school year. WSSD ranks number one out of the 500 school districts in Pennsylvania for the least amount of taxable commercial properties. This year, the district is recommending a 2.4% increase in local real estate taxes. This will amount to roughly an additional $402 per year for a house valued at $377,000.

In order to meet expenditures, the district will withdraw $451,134 from the fund balance. Kew emphasized that the district continues, “to work diligently to reduce the structural deficit,” yet the budget could not be met this year without seeking an additional withdrawal. The capital budget includes initiatives for Chromebooks for incoming 9th graders, the purchase of more efficient snow removal equipment, and additional …

New Hair Salon Turns up the Volume

Anna Mazepink (left) and Angela Drabik at their new studio on S. Chester Road.

Turn it up! High Volume Hair Studio opened last week at 9 S. Chester Road in the Ville of Swarthmore. Proprietors Angela Drabik and Anna Mazepink, both Delaware County natives who now live in Drexel Hill, worked at the Hair Cuttery in Ridley for many years before busting loose to dream up and open High Volume.

Spacious, tidy and bright, the salon’s look is the product of six months of building out, installing fixtures and painting — work donated by Anna’s boyfriend, Angela’s husband, assorted parents and in-laws. During that phase, the owners got to know Swarthmore, which they characterized as a “beautiful small town with a great sense of community.” They look forward to working with new clients from the borough and nearby, and, as their book of business grows, adding new stylists to work the additional chairs in the shop.

Services range from a $10 men’s shape up and a $21 women’s cut to $100 balayage and $200+ keratin treatments. The studio is open Tuesday through Saturday; call 484-471-3264 or visit their Facebook page.

May Fair and Book Sale at the Furness Library

The Helen Kate Furness Free Library in Wallingford will hold its annual May Fair on Saturday, May 12, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Stop by for freshly grilled food, face painting, games and prizes for kids, plants sale, baked goods, a visiting fire truck, a costume jewelry counter, a moon bounce and of course, the first day of HKF’s spring Book Sale! Come join Helen Kate staff, board members, and volunteers at this much loved family event.

The Book Sale features thousands of books in all categories — fiction, mysteries, cookbooks, art, gardening, history, rare books, and much more. Donors to the Library’s Annual Appeal are invited to a special preview on Friday, May 11, from 7 to 9 p.m.

The Book Sale continues through Tuesday during regular library hours. Hard-backed books will be half price on Sunday, and then $2 a bag Monday, May 14, and Tuesday, May 15.

All funds earned will provide library programs, materials and services to the community. The Helen Kate Furness Free Library is located at 100 N. Providence Road.

Potters Guild Sale Next Weekend

Brett Thomas, ceramic artist and Potters’ Guild member, is pictured loading the gas kiln in preparation for the spring sale. See the final pots at the Preview Party, May 3, at Community Arts Center, where the sale runs through May 6, 2018.

Featuring a wide selection of functional and decorative handcrafted pottery, the Potters Guild’s annual spring sale opens in The Duke Gallery at Community Arts Center, 414 Plush Mill Road, Wallingford, next Thursday, May 3, with a preview party, from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. For a $5 ticket, party-goers will enjoy refreshments while they have first choice among the works of the Potters Guild’s 30 members. The sale continues all weekend long from May 4 through May 6. Hours are Friday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission to the sale is free and shoppers will be treated to a wide variety of pottery created by the skilled ceramicists of The Potters Guild. Items available for purchase include everything from fanciful figurines, sculptures, vases, tiles, flower pots, bowls, and mugs, to garden ornaments, small fountains, tea pots, tiles, clocks, decorative masks, and large serving platters and bowls. For more information, contact CAC at 610-566-1713, or visit communityartscenter.org.

Think Pink

In the interest of community health, several local Crozer-Keystone Health System offices are putting a special focus on women’s health with Think Pink mammography events during the month of May. Facilities are equipped with the latest 3-D mammography technology, and Crozer Keystone offers additional inducements to schedule an …

Musicopia Benefit at SHHS Next Friday

Strath Haven High School musicians are putting their talents forth to benefit budding musicians elsewhere in the Philadelphia area. The SHHS Musicopia Benefit Concert next Friday, May 4, gathers talented artists in many musical genres, in a fundraiser for the non-profit organization Musicopia, whose mission is to provide music education …

Relay For Life on for
Saturday at Strath Haven’s King Field

The annual Relay for Life, a 12-hour festival of fundraising and fellowship, will take place this Saturday, April 28, at George L. King Field in Wallingford. Beginning at 10 a.m., students, faculty, staff and their families will walk laps on the track behind Strath Haven Middle School, in a marathon day benefitting the work of the American Cancer Society in providing support for patients battling cancer and their caregivers, as well as to fund research. 

The event will include activities for the whole family, including a scavenger hunt, a World Cup soccer game, face painting, a survivor/caregiver walk, and a nighttime luminaria ceremony. Performers take the stage to inspire walkers with live music in the afternoon, and food will be available for purchase in abundance. The event is open to all from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Admission is a suggested donation of $5. To donate to the event or to join a team, visit: www.relayforlife.org/pahaven.

Toe the Lions at Fun Fair 5K Run & Walk on May 20

Three weeks until the Swarthmore Charity Fun Fair on May 20: Just enough time to buy a new pair of running shoes, break them in, and take your training up a level for a challenging 5K course … or to take care of your chores early, clear your Sunday afternoon schedule, and round up the family for a spring ramble through Swarthmore. Whatever your approach, the Fun Fair 5K Run and Walk is the event for you. Lions Charities will benefit from proceeds from this race, which is supported by Swarthmore Rotary Club.

In its 17th year, the Fun Fair event welcomes participants of all ages and fitness levels. The 3.1 mile course includes some hills as it winds through the streets of Swarthmore and the campus of Swarthmore College. Live entertainment, food, and fun await finishers at Swarthmore Fun Fair immediately after the race. T-shirts are guaranteed to first 100 registrants.

The race goes off at noon on Sunday, May 20, from the Swarthmore train station. Registration and race packet pick-up take place there from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. An awards ceremony will recognize the first three male and female runners, along with winners in eight age groups. Online registration through runtheday.com is $25; the entry fee is $30 on race day. For more information, call James Ryan at 610-909-3127; email jdryan17@gmail.com, and visit www.swarthmorefair.org.

Phyllis Raymond’s Commitment to Learning

At a recent luncheon, WSCC board members honored Phyllis Raymond for her 20 years of inspired and steady service to the program. From left to right are Jane Standish, Carol Fanconi, Peg Christensen, Phyllis Raymond, and Susan Larson. Peg Christensen cited one of Phyllis’s great gifts: “She was adept at thinking of new courses and finding excellent instructors that she convinced to teach for us. That is the life blood of our organization’s success.”

Nearly 70 years after it began in Swarthmore, Phyllis Raymond’s journey to the various points of the post-secondary educational compass is finishing where it started. Twenty years after friends recruited her to the board of Wallingford-Swarthmore Community Classes, she’s rotating off, saying, “I am the only one from that era who is still involved, and I love it. But I am 85, and there are young people who are very interested, and doing a great job on the board.”

She has been instrumental to the development of successful and varied courses for WSCC, which offers 50 or more courses each semester to lifelong learners, with classes meeting at Strath Haven High School in evening hours, Swarthmore Borough Hall by day, and various other locations.

Phyllis’s first retirement was in 1994 from Swarthmore College, where she had worked since 1971, the last 20 of which were spent as Associate Dean of Admissions, traveling to convince bright students to come to Swarthmore. Prior to that, Phyllis had also tutored students, and taught briefly; she “never liked teaching.”

But she did love learning, and worked through obstacles to pursue her degrees. Enrolled as a Swarthmore undergraduate in 1950, Phyllis was uprooted when her Swat grad and naval officer husband Richard was assigned to Norfolk. She enrolled at William & Mary, and then finally accepted her baccalaureate diploma from the University of Indiana, where her husband was earning a Master’s after leaving the service. Her husband ultimately topped out with a law degree earned at night while working for the government in Arlington, Va.

Phyllis said, “I was wishing I’d gotten a graduate degree, so when we moved back to Swarthmore, I asked around … and the head of the Political Science department, Roland Pennock, put together a Master’s program for me. I asked if anyone had ever done it; he said no, but we can work something out for you. It was a lot of work over two years, but I did it.” 

Phyllis is still in Swarthmore, where granddaughter Hayley Raymond will graduate in May from the College. Maybe some semester, she’ll get to check off another box in her continuing education: in all her years on the WSCC board, Phyllis has yet to enroll in a course there. 

A Tale of Two Projects: Faculty Lecture at McCabe Atrium

Amy Cheng Vollmer, Swarthmore College professor of Biology, will discuss two lines of promising microbiological research in a faculty lecture which is open to the community at large, at 4:15 p.m. on Tuesday, May 1, in the atrium at the college’s McCabe Library. Vollmer will report on studies of a protein linked to stress survival in bacteria, and …

Congressional Candidates Forum: Gun Policy

After scores of recent mass killings in schools and government offices, at clubs and concerts, in workplaces and in restaurants, all facilitated by high capacity weapons, momentum is growing for sensible and effective control of guns and ammunition. Politicians are under increasing pressure to articulate their positions on gun policy. If …

Earnest, Silly … and Important

Relaxing in the country are Earnest cast members (standing, left to right) Jennifer Summerfield and Jessica Dal Canton; (sitting) Jared Reed; and (reclining) Adam Altman. Photo by Kyle Cassidy.

Opening with a preview on Thursday, May 3, Hedgerow Theatre revives Oscar Wilde’s comic masterpiece The Importance of Being Earnest in a crisp and stylish production on Hedgerow’s Rose Valley stage at 64 Rose Valley Road.

Wilde’s cast of upper class Britons at the turn of the 19th century is all crackling dialogue and arch manners. As did Wilde, the play embodies British dandyism, its superficial gaiety thinly veiling commentary on the hypocrisy of modern life and mores. The play endures as a flamboyant comedy of manners full of mistaken identities, secret engagements, and non-existent lovers, as well as biting social commentary that is agelessly relevant.

Barrymore award winner Dan Hodge directs, conjuring the talent for farce which is a core characteristic of the Hedgerow company. This production brings out the wit and essence of the characters even as they embarrass themselves with vanity, miscalculations, and bad behavior.

Core Hedgerow company members comprise the cast, including Jennifer Summerfield, Jessica Dal Canton, Adam Altman, and Producing Artistic Director Jared Reed. Following the Thursday preview (tickets are $20), the production opens on Saturday, May 5, with performances each Thursday through Sunday until May 27. Ticket prices range from $20 to $35, with several special events planned on various show dates. See hedgerowtheatre.org for details, or call 610-566-4211.

Hope for Honduras Benefit Concert

Sunday is the day; the Swarthmore Friends Meeting House at 12 Whittier Place is the setting; health care for Hondurans is the cause which will benefit from the 2018 Hope for Honduras concert on April 29. The concert features local talent of all ages, led by Strath Haven High School students in the Silvertones choral group and the SHHS Saxophone …

Arla Patch Exhibit of ‘A Heart Story’ Opens at Pendle Hill

Quakertown artist and educator Arla Patch exhibits her 16-piece polymer clay series “A Heart Story” in the Barn Gallery at Pendle Hill, beginning tonight, April 27.  “‘A Heart Story’ was sparked by loss and betrayal,” Ms. Patch said. “It was a three-year project, and through it, heartbreak was transformed, stage-by-stage, into a new whole heart.” Patch …

Masterworks Chorale Sings
Rutter and Bach Sunday

Kat Bowman

The Masterworks Chorale invites the music-loving public to attend its spring concert, featuring the Requiem by John Rutter and selections from Cantata 21 by J. S. Bach.

The concert is at 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 29, at Swarthmore United Methodist Church, directed by Kat Bowman and includes Swarthmoreans Mary Huissen, cello and YunJoung Park, piano. Tickets may be purchased at the door for $15 for adults and $5 for children and students. A reception will follow the concert.

The Masterworks Chorale, founded in 1979 as the Upper Darby Singers, is devoted to the performance of quality choral music, covering a wide range of periods, styles, and languages.

Great Plants, Cheap at SHS Second Chance Sale

On Saturday, May 5, Swarthmore Horticultural Society will sell shrubs and perennials from the containers in downtown Swarthmore from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Offerings include Cornus ‘Ivory Halo’ (Dogwood) for $20, Juniperus ‘Robusta Green’ (juniper) for $20 and Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’ at 3 for $10. Carex ‘Ice Dance’ will be 3 for $5. SHS will be selling all plants at the Swarthmore Farmers Market, on the Lafayette Avenue side for convenient pick-up. You may pay for your purchases by cash, check or credit card. All plants must be picked up by 11:30 a.m. For more information, please go to the SHS website at swarthmorehorticuluralsociety.org.

Hot Topic: Community Policing

Make plans now to join three leading local lawmen for a discussion of “Community Policing: Challenges and Opportunities” at the monthly Hot Topics luncheon in Media on Friday, May 11. The League of Women Voters invite you to hear Swarthmore police …

Family Caregivers Speakers Series Continues

Senior Community Services’ free speakers series for family caregivers continues next Thursday, May 3, with a presentation on “The Role and Benefits of Effective Communication in Caregiving” by Sharon White, MSS, LCSW. Caregivers and their …

Kentucky Folktales at RV Story House

Kentucky-born Mary Hamilton has been at this storytelling business for a while — 35 years or so as a full-time professional. She is the author of the 2012 book Kentucky Folktales: Revealing Stories, Truths, and Outright Lies, and it is from that deep well that she will …

Briefly Noted . . .

The Swarthmore Co-Op annual meeting was held at the store on April 19. General manager Mike Litka and outgoing Board president Pam Bartholomew reviewed the past year and shared their outlook for the coming year. Co-Op members elected new board members and approved a bylaw revision that allowed voting for board members and Co-Op matters by email. Board members in the picture are (front, l. to r.): Jacqlyn Diamond and Ines Rodriquez; back row from left: Andy Rieger; Lori Knauer; Barbara Amstutz; Jill Gaieski, vice president; Mark Rossi, secretary; John Moots; Stephanie Edwards, treasurer; Donna Francher, president, and Greg Bochman.

Over three snack periods recently at Wallingford Elementary School, Sue Gaur, her 2nd grade class, and a community of supportive and thirsty WES students, staff and parents raised $1,866 for Relay for Life and The American Cancer Society. Mrs. Gaur has been working creatively for 13 years with her WES classes to raise money for ACS through an in-school lemonade stand. She and her 2nd graders sang out the apparently irresistible ditty: “All children in WES land, come to Mrs. Gaur’s Lemonade Stand. Lemonade and a pretzel make a good snack, bring $2 in your backpack.  Enjoy some lemonade and make your day sunny;  Relay for Life will get all your money!” Lemon AID workers included (top row from left to right): Jayden D., Skylar H., Isaac H., Jonah L., Zach A., Sue Gaur, Elizabeth W., Bianca B. and Luka N.; (middle row from left to right): Cameron D., Ryan S., Lena G., Christian K., Margaret H., Shira J., Ellis W., Eli V. and  Holly C.; (bottom row from left to right): Amalia N., Maureen A., Livy T., Luca D. and Cooper M.

Roll up your sleeves for some easy and rewarding environmental work next Monday, May 7, at Crumhenge in the Crum Meadow, as planting continues the first phase of the Crum Woods Restoration and Stewardship Plan, which was called for after the construction of the SEPTA Viaduct and redoing of the sanitary sewer line in recent years. Volunteers will plant plugs of 49 native plants in the grass field below the Holly Collection, helping build a fully functioning meadow including  grasses, flowers, and other wet and dry meadow species. The meadow planting has an aesthetic component, and a practical imperative: to restore this flood plain’s capacity to handle inundation. 

More than 70 volunteers, including Swarthmore faculty, students, and staff and members of the Swarthmore community, took part in the first planting of 4,000 plugs on April 6 (above). The May 7 session begins at 10 a.m. and runs through 1 p.m., when volunteers will be treated to lunch. RSVP to sustainability project manager Amos Frye ‘19 at afrye1@swarthmore.edu. For the big picture on the plans for Crum restoration, go to swarthmore.edu/crum-woods-stewardship.

Monday night, April 23, Congressman Pat Meehan honored Strath Haven High School 11th grader Perry Sosi with a first-place Congressional Art award in the Digital Art Category. The 7th District Congressional Art show is a juried show that is held in every Congressional district across the country to encourage and recognize the artistic talent in the nation and in each Congressional District. Perry’s piece is a self-portrait using watercolor brushes in Adobe Illustrator. His portrait was created in Mrs. Taylor’s Graphic Design 3 Class. Perry has plans to study Graphic Design on the College level when he graduates. This is a great honor to win a place in the Congressional Art Show. 

Singer and guitarist Doug Hill of Wallingford and music partner Hugh Colocott will perform as 92nd Street this Saturday, April 28, at Steel City Coffee House in Phoenixville. Showtime is 8 p.m. for this gig, which also features Ray Adkins. Tickets are $12 in advance (call 484-924-8425) and $15 at the door.

Cora Lausch saves an earthworm at the Great Swarthmore Clean-Up on Earth Day 2018. Photo by Tim Kearney.

Poetry Corner

Unsureness

From the May 8, 2020 Swarthmorean: The Swarthmore Farmers Market was snowed out again. They have now decided to restart on Saturday, June 6.

First
our memories will change
as normal changes
to meet up with what is
now normal
Who remembers Spring Planting
It was always summer, wasn’t it
Community Greenhouses were always there
not just sprung up

Note: Please look under notices in the Swarthmorean for share information for the new Community Greenhouses.

Maybe new memories are in the process
of being implanted
and we just haven’t been told about it
just like a latest relationship
replaces the previous one
a new dog the memory of the old one

Notice: The Swarthmore Swim Club will close any days when the temperature goes below 80 degrees starting December 10. It will, as usual, be closed during the Christmas holidays.

Where was yesterday
when there were seasons four
or is that just a musical fiction
by Vivaldi someone

— Bob Small

Bob Small is a long time resident of Swarthmore living with his wife, Paula Bronstein, and their cats, dogs, and chickens. He has retired from any and all activism, but is focusing on writing Letters to the Editor, Poetry, Polemics, Plays, etc., some of which can be seen at his web address robertthesmall on wordpress.

Oregon Beach

Broken tongues
Of basalt flows
Break the lowly mist
And basement to
The smoky haze
Smooth shiny plains
Interrogate between
The surf and grassy bench.
We name these beaches
But walking in the mist
With the early sun
Alight the raptured waves
An ancient chord resounds
And I become lost in time
A four dimensioned one
And life becomes
The washing of the waves
And the order of the grains
On these obscure and mystic plains.

Figures in the mist
Well by
Tortured and
Buried half in sand
They too sing
But with the voice
Of inland spirits gone astray
Reach up
Weathered arms!
Catch the strands of fog
Thy brothers stand
The headlands sentinel
And point the wind
With knotty arthritic hands

The waves tumble in
And the order is destroyed
Each grain
Jumping to the flow of tide
The plains are gone
The graven arms rock
In a milk of chaos
Cold black rocks
Roar green wet songs
And spouting caves
Breathe and sneeze
Their foaming spittle

Soon the mist is gone
And with the falling tide
A new order will arise
The cross-washed sand
Has made smooth plains
The sun bursts forth
The sandpiper runs
Along the tongues of foam
And cries
Life, life!
Life will abide again!

— Christopher Ray

“As a native of Westport, Conn., and Long Island Sound, I had never seen such beaches!”

Lawn Boys

I swear it’s the mayhem that gets them going,
revving those little motors without the first
shred of a permit. This latest one runs through
two gas cans easy, just tanking around, rearing
the housing up on its hind wheels, toeing its nose
smack down into the borders, throttling, choking –
yes, a carte blanche invitation to destroy.

Whatever gets them off the couch, it’s not the lawn
itself. These guys aren’t gardeners, can’t read the line
dividing sod from shrub, grassplot from seedbed.
They’ll put the parrot-tulips to the blade, slice
right through violets and fern brakes, yet leave untouched
a pride of thistles, a bristle of dandelions –
“so pretty.” And nor is it the money, else

they’d be here more often. First of spring, I call
and call, while the grass thickens to pasture, then
to wildwood, then to spinney. This latest one
has set his phone to seem he’s answered: “Wait a sec!
My battery’s low! I’ll just grab the extension – “
then a long pause, then some well-recorded fumbling, then
more mutters just before the razzy beep. I leave him

long detailed messages I know he won’t play through.
That’s why – must be – that rise by the front walk’s
razed raw again, why the side-yard’s gone to briars.
“Take care,” I’ll tell the phone; “there’s deadwood fallen,”
but that won’t slow him: he won’t pick up sticks, grinds through
whatever’s in his way, shredding plastic bags and paper,
shattering branches – once even a brick

to see its splinters scatter and fly. My daddy mowed
sedately, sober as a farmer guiding the plow
behind the plodding mule, methodical,
meticulous. These guys are rough-riders,
lathering their broncs up San Juan Hill, and I
must like that better. Mayhem. What else
do I get? What else do I pay them for?

— Nathalie Anderson

Rough

After the sightings, the sea got rough,
got rough on us, shale fallen to scarp and
shoving down, shunting against itself,
scathing and carping, flints striking flakes
off each other, sparking white, black, white.

Did I say sightings? I meant to say biting.
Nobody in beyond the ankle but
still that slash to the ankle bone, the sea
a sussurus of open-jawed serration,
strange voice at your ear.

Whatever we glimpsed out there hid itself
in potentia, flexing its muscle
under the water’s skin. Head of a hawk,
head of a rottweiler. And the seals
in their slickers, black-backed, menaced

as we were, too doggish to know it. Her husband
lost like that, no longer the man she’d married,
but when were we ever? Nail head. Hammer head.
When will you admit you didn’t know your own mother?
Strange mouth at your ear. Strange hand on your arm.

And did I say spiky? I meant to say spiny.
We could feel it under foot, every step
from the shoreline to the car. The sand
rough on us, the mind rougher.
Cross-cut saw. Shredder.

— Nathalie Anderson

Nathalie Anderson of Rutledge has authored four books: Following Fred Astaire (The Word Works, 1998); Crawlers (Ashland Poetry Press, 2005); Quiver (Penstroke, 2011); and Stain, (The Word Works, 2017), as well as the chapbook Held and Firmly Bound (Muddy Ford, 2017). Anderson directs the Program in Creative Writing at Swarthmore College. 

The Big Girls

Surging through the hall
Lips red with gossip and laughter
DAs bobbing in time,
They carry on their hips
Books unopened since the fall.

Then out the door
They cross the street
To their big beautiful Buicks
(Reaching 3rdbefore mid-block)
Leaving us behind
Yearning to be born
           Before—

— Louise Coffin

How I Grew Up

My mother wore stockings with seams,
A garter belt, “step-ins,”
Brassieres of cotton,
And lacy-bodiced slips.

Each day, pearls
Given her by her father
When she turned 16.
He died before I was born.

My mother’s pale ashes
Lie in a nearby cemetery;
The pearls rest in a velvet case,
And white is just another color.

— Louise Coffin

Diary Entry

What I wrote
Just yesterday,
Filtered through my memory,
Vain effort to capture what has been.

Wasis not in my vocabulary
(That finite ending, no recourse).
But this ephemera is just that:
The gossamer moment,

The dress I wore or the smile,
And your words
Out on the air
To float away—

Delicate points too frail to abide
only
for me
The bequeathing of promises dimmed by hope.

— Louise Coffin

Paper Dolls

Cut-outs we were
Tacked to the walls
All smiles and red cheeks, nimble-fingered
Simulacra of the living.

— Louise Coffin

Louise Coffin, a former high school English teacher in Atlanta, revels in her Swarthmore retirement.

Floating Photographer

What the best thing about Spring? 

Asked on a sunny Monday in the Swarthmore Town Center amphitheater and the Co-Op.

By Chris Reynolds

Mary Hasbrouck (left), Bob Scott, and Susan Smythe, all of Swarthmore

Mary: The warmth.

Bob: Having 9 months of better weather ahead.

Susan: Being able to get out in the garden.

 

Alexis Schwartz (left), Greg Mote, and Cassius, all of Swarthmore

Alexis: The trees! They are all flowering at once.

Greg: Just being outside.

Cassius: Playing outside, because it doesn’t snow.

 

 

 

 

Dan Darkow, Conshohocken

Getting out to play some golf.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Susan Wefel, Rose Valley

The weather! It’s sunny,

but still cool. Right now, it’s perfect.

Letters to the Editor

Rowan (left) and Harrison Brown are two of the youngest helpers, who volunteered to help cleanup Little Crum Creek Park on Earth Day.

Little Crum Creek Park Cleanup Day

To the Editor:

To celebrate Earth Day, about 50 people of all ages gathered on Saturday, April 21, to clean up the park and streams for the busy season ahead.

The trees throughout the park were weeded and mulched; the streams running through the park were searched for treasures while trash was being removed; the woodchip path was restored to prepare for the heavy use it gets throughout the year; and mulch was placed around all of the posts that hold the pages for the storybook walk (a nice addition to the park).

Many thanks to all volunteers — from Swarthmore, neighboring communities, and Maryland. Thanks also to the Swarthmore Public Works Department for providing mulch and woodchips, and returning early on Monday morning to pick up the debris and trash collected by the volunteers; to the Swarthmore Public Library for their ongoing promotion for us; and to the CRC Watersheds Association for providing gloves and bags for this annual event.

It’s always gratifying to see the diverse age groups we attract, and hearing the shared stories on how and why people use the park, making it a better place while making new friends. If you missed us this time, we’ll be having more opportunities to help in the months to come. Stay tuned!

Susan Kelly
Matt McCabe
Swarthmore Environmental Advisory Council

A turning point in gun violence?

To the Editor:

The gun deaths of 17 students and teachers at a suburban high school in Florida in February dominated the headlines across the U.S. and beyond for weeks and led to marches and a political movement that still resonates in the news media and has politicians running for cover.

In contrast, 43 gun-related homicides in Delaware County during 2017, 29 of them in Chester, made hardly a blip on the screen. One major difference: In this case they came, not in a single massacre, but in a steady drip drip drip – one this week, another a couple weeks later, etc. But the loss of promising young lives and the heartache for family and friends that will never go away are just as real. And folks in Swarthmore and Wallingford can no longer say: “Somebody else’s problem.”

Not long ago a young woman, aged 19, an innocent bystander, was shot and killed in Chester. In response, more than a hundred people turned out for a march and rally at the site, demanding that something be done to stop the loss of young lives. It included Chester officials, people from the suburbs, and clergy from as far away as Wilmington.

A few years ago, a 14-year-old boy was shot down at that very same site. No marches; no rallies. Brief mention in the news, and then it was as if it had never happened.

So we’ve reached some kind of turning point. The test will be whether we are still demanding that our elected officials at every level of government start standing up to the NRA when the midterm elections come round in November.

At patriotic gatherings we like to say of those who died in battle, “They shall not have died in vain.” Fitting words for remembering those young victims of gun violence here at home.

If anyone is interested in getting involved in the movement for sensible gun policies, I can be reached at willrichan@comcast.net (subject heading: guns)

Will Richan
Chester

In this week’s issue . . .

(Left to right) Special effects director Liz Krov makes final adjustments to a prosthetic rig as the scene is slated and director Cameron Mitchell gets ready to go for a take.

Moviemaking After Hours in The Co-Op

Former Swarthmorean and 2009 Strath Haven alumnus Cameron Mitchell returned last weekend to the Swarthmore Co-Op, camera in hand and film crew in tow. In a couple of long nights shooting in the store after hours, film director Mitchell has the footage in the can, and post-production is under way on his movie entitled …wait for it … “The Co-Op.” 

His first narrative film will be entered in the Easter Seals Disability Film Challenge, Mitchell said recently, describing the script: “The log line for ‘The Co-Op’ is: A robber’s plan quickly unravels when he discovers that the Co-Op he has marked is full of disabled people. I wanted to create a film where we would see many disabled people in a public setting and a film that would have a disabled person in a protagonist role dealing revenge on all of the past representations of disability in cinema.”

The film project was a bit of a family affair. Cameron met Rachel Middleton (SHHS 2011) in Strath Haven’s marching band in 2008. The couple married last year and now live in northern New Jersey, but had a reunion of sorts in Swarthmore. Rachel’s sister Rose McDaniel was location manager for the shoot at the Co-Op where she is Departments Manager. Cameron’s father David, who is disabled, acted in the film. Both parents are professors of disability studies at George Washington University, but maintain a home in Swarthmore, where Cameron’s interest in film began. He developed his conceptual technical abilities in Temple University’s Film program and has since worked on many films as a documentary director, cinematographer, and in camera, production and lighting on major studio productions.

Links for viewing The Co-Op and other entries in the Easter Seals Disability Film Challenge at disabilityfilmchallenge.com.

Treats for the Mind and the Mouth
at SPL Book & Bake Sale

Starting next Thursday, you can feast your intellect and your taste buds at the Swarthmore Public Library’s annual Book and Bake Sale with thousands of books at popular prices and delicious home baked treats on offer.

This year, there is a bumper crop of young adult fiction among the vast array of hardcover and paperback books covering virtually every subject and every table  in Swarthmore’s Borough Hall. 

The children’s book room has board books, chapter books, picture books; games and puzzles abound; CDs, DVDs and other forms of media are represented; coffee table books and other rare and precious volumes fill the Booktique.

The sale opens Thursday, April 26, at 9 a.m. through 7 p.m. Friday’s hours are the same but most items are half price, while Saturday’s “$5 a bag” sale goes from 9 to 4 p.m. The discounts apply to most items except those in the Booktique, which will go for $20 a bag on Saturday.

The talents of local bakers will also be on display, as well as businesses like Occasionally Yours and Hobbs. If you can contribute, please bring your baked goods to the Library on Wednesday, April 25. In any case, come to the sale hungry and forget your diet. 

All proceeds from the Book and Bake Sale benefit the Swarthmore Public Library and its programs and services. To get involved, call SPL president Carol Kennedy at 610-328-7398.

‘The Greatest Story Ever Sung’ Opens at PCS

Starting tonight — Friday, April 20 — the Players Club of Swarthmore presents Jesus Christ Superstar for10 performances through May 5 on the PCS Main Stage at 614 Fairview Road in Swarthmore. Bohdan Senkow directs this righteous, revolutionary …

Music at Lang, This Weekend and Next

Tis the season for chamber music as students in Swarthmore College’s Elizabeth Pollard Fetter program perform four concerts in the coming week.The first of these will be held tonight (Friday) at Lang Concert Hall, beginning at 8 p.m.; encores of the Fetter …

Campus & Community Store Plans
Independent Bookstore Day Bash

Browse, nosh, laugh and shop next Saturday at the Swarthmore Campus & Community Store, in celebration of Independent Bookstore Day. From 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday, April 28, the store at 4 S. Chester Avenue will offer an author reading, raffle, …

Early Spring and Tree Peonies Tour at Scott

On Tuesday, April 24 at noon, stroll the grounds of Scott Arboretum with the Arboretum’s expert staff, paying particular attention to the somewhat delayed spring blooms. On Monday, April 30, from 5 to 6:30 p.m., experts from the Mid-Atlantic Peony Society …

Spend Arbor Day at the Arboretum

Next Saturday morning, April 28, from 9 a.m. to noon, bring the family to celebrate Arbor Day at Scott Arboretum. Start at the Wister Center, tour the arboretum on a scavenger hunt, get practical horticultural advice from Scott’s friendly gardeners, enjoy refreshments…

Vaccine Facts at Schoolhouse

Next Thursday, April 26, come to Schoolhouse Center to get the facts about vaccines for shingles, flu, and pneumonia in people age 50 and up. Alight meal will be served at the free session. Come by 4:15 p.m. to register for the 4:30 program. The center is at …

Schoolhouse Offers Class to Save You Time

The Schoolhouse Center in Folsom presents “Eliminating Errands,” a class on Tuesday, April 30, designed to help you save time and aggravation by using your cell phone or tablet to automate and shortcut those tedious chores.The class meets from 11 a.m. …

Teach Swimming This Summer!

If you enjoy the water, consider giving lessons this summer to students in the Chester Children’s Chorus Summer Program. As part of the Chester Children’s Chorus 6-week Summer Program, learning to swim has become a favorite activity for the younger …

WSSD Sets Summer Band and String School

Summer is the season for young musicians pursuing virtuosity, picking up a new instrument, or just having fun playing music with friends. The Wallingford-Swarthmore Summer Band and String School is the place to do all three. Beginning June 18, the …

Art + R + B = Friday Night Live at CAC

The spring season of Friday Night Live wraps on April 27 with an exciting pairing at Community Arts Center: soul singer Lisa Chavous with visual artists Olga Nielsen and James Kelewae.  Lisa Chavous performs R & B from Motown to Philly and beyond. …

LWV Candidate Forums May 1 & 2

The League of Women Voters sponsors two important forums, convening Fifth District Congressional candidates to discuss their positions in advance of the May 15 primary elections. The audience will submit questions for the participants at the events. At …

March in May

With just a month to go until the Swarthmore Charity Fun Fair on Sunday, May 20, it’s time to make your plans to join the fun in the grand opening parade, which this year has the theme “Having Fun Helping Others.”  Get together with friends and neighbors, family …

Dig M. Louise Baker, Archeological Artist of Yore, In HKF Program Wednesday
By Angela Hewett

To early 20th century archaeologists digging in the Middle East and South America for 2,000-year-old artifacts, the most popular woman in America was artist M. Louise Baker — and she lived in Wallingford! An artist, Baker worked at University of Pennsylvania …

College Seniors, Working in Many Media,
to Show at List Gallery

From April 19 through May 14, a series of four weeklong thesis exhibitions at List Gallery will feature the work of eight Swarthmore College senior art majors, each of whom has developed themes and created works reflecting a conceptual focus. Their chosen …

Stories of Other Places and Other Times

Interactive tribal songs; flute, hoop and eagle dances; urban anecdotes and timeless teachings all weave together in Ty Defoe’s “Hoop of Life” exploratory performance, which will take place on Tues., April 24, 4:30 p.m. at Upper Tarble in Clothier Hall. Storytelling …

Ohara Ikebana Exhibition, Workshop This Weekend

The Delaware Valley chapter of Ohara Ikebana presents a weekend celebrating the exquisite art of Japanese flower arranging, beginning on Friday, April 20, with a reception from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Wister Center of Scott Arboretum at Swarthmore College. On …

TGP Welcomes Pat Francher

Pat Francher, coordinator of the Swarthmore Farmers Market and Makers Market, will be the speaker at the Wednesday, April 25, Gathering Place meeting as part of the Swarthmore Senior Citizens’ Association series of “Around the Ville” in April at …

Readings at Swarthmore College

Ru Freeman, author of A Disobedient Girl and On Sal Mal Lane, will read from her work at the Scheuer Room of Kohlberg Hall on Tuesday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. On the following afternoon, Mikhail Shishkin speaks about the experiences and cross-cultural …

Ed Jones’s First Hundred Years, Mostly in Swarthmore

Ed and Donna Kay Jones at their home at 221 Haverford Avenue. In the background is 227, where Ed grew up and later lived for decades.

New centenarian Ed Jones has spent about 80 of his years in Swarthmore, and given much of his wisdom any energy to the leadership of its civic and community institutions. The members of two of these — the Rotary Club of Swarthmore and the Centennial Foundation — recently honored him with celebrations of his April birthday. Before the cheers subsided, the Swarthmorean talked recently with Ed and his wife Donna Kay Croddy in their home at 221 Haverford Avenue.

Ed: I’ve lived in this house only since I got married. My father designed and built the house next door, 227. He took the plans into an architect in Philadelphia, asked him how much it would cost, the architect said $10,000. So he brought the plans back, and was his own architect. We moved there in fall of 1931.

The Swarthmorean: So you’re not a native?
Ed: I came to Swarthmore in the 8th grade, so I’m a newcomer. I was born on 28th Street in Chester, so they tell me; I was not recording these events. They jumped me ahead so I graduated in 1935. Went through all four years of Swarthmore High School, at the corner of College and Princeton avenues in what is now the elementary school.

TS:  Did the town look different then?
Ed: Chester Road was a grade crossing, no underpass, with gates and a watchman on duty. Lots of train traffic, freight as well as passenger. I was present when they dedicated the underpass. They  cut a ribbon; I was prepared with the scissors and cut a piece off. I gave that to the Swarthmore Historical Society.

TS: Where else have you lived in Swarthmore?
Ed: I was overseas in the Army when I got a letter from my wife [Lyn, Ed’s first wife of 72 years, died in 2013], saying ‘Come home and live in the house I bought.’ It was a twin stucco house on Hillborn, and we lived there about 3 or 4 years until our eldest child was ready to start school. I was having lunch down in Chester one day when I heard a Realtor sitting at the next table describing a house that he had for sale. I walked over to him and said, ‘I’ll buy that house.’ It was on the 300 block of Cornell Avenue, near the grade school and just what I wanted for my children. We lived there until my father got quite old and infirm, and we moved to his house. Then I ended up getting married to Donna Kay [already living at 221] and moving here.

TS: Were you always a Quaker?
Ed: I was born, baptized and confirmed as an Episcopalian in Chester. We moved from Chester and when I got old enough I went to the minister in Cheater and said, “I want to transfer my membership from the Episcopal Church to the Quaker Meeting. My wife’s a Quaker.” He said, “no, once you’re an Episcopalian, you’re always an Episcopalian. You can’t transfer out.” That irritated me, I said, “If I don’t make it to heaven as a Quaker, I’ll fall back on what you’ve got.” That was my last conversation with him.”

When they put the addition on the meetinghouse [Whittier Hall] some years back, I was the clerk and signed the note to borrow $100,000 to build the addition. This was the biggest note I’ve ever signed. That was a real act of faith, and they paid it off in a year’s time, with contributions.

TS: You are speaking this week at the Rotary Club of Swarthmore. How long have you been a Rotarian?
Ed: I joined Chester Rotary first, about 1945. When I came out of the service, one of the first things I did was see if I could become a Rotarian. They put me in charge of handing out all the name cards. I became the acting president. GE had a big firm in Eddystone and their workers were on strike. I invited management to come speak to Rotary about their problem. They declined. So I called the head of the union and asked him to come tell us what it’s all about … [A newspaper story on the talk appeared], and the next day I got a phone call. Management wanted their own Rotary program. An agreement was reached.

TS: What was your job in the Army?
Ed: Training clerks in Aberdeen, Maryland, [and then in England and France] I was a junior officer in a heavy automotive maintenance company … I’d been assigned 6 men to locate vehicles. We drove them … into Paris and we saw the victory parade go down the Champs Elysee, with General Eisenhower sitting in the back of an open car. I knew it was going to be worth seeing.

I got assigned to the war crimes branch in Weisbaden. Every POW who was released into American hands was interviewed on release as to anything they might have seen or heard, and those interviews were stacked up. It was our job to go through them. I was already a lawyer at this point. I stayed until the Nuremberg trials began. I was in that job for six months or so. 

TS: Then what?
Ed: Then back to my father’s law office in Chester, a member of the Delaware County Bar, the firm was Jones and Jones, he was the third generation. When I got back to my father’s law firm, he made me responsible for building up deposits in the Chester Federal Savings and Loan which later merged with Bryn Mawr Trust.

Now, I’m pretty near retirement. I developed quite a practice of writing wills and settling estates and I found that people who have wills written, by and large they expect to live for a good many years. But it doesn’t bring me new clients.

TS: What was your role in creating the Centennial Foundation?
Ed: I had a wealthy client and told her that this was a place to put her wealth when she died. We started it while she was still living, and set out to define its purpose. I invited all former mayors of Swarthmore to lunch, where I invited them to become members of the first board of directors. The donor was interested in parks, and scholarships, and its mission has remained consistent.

TS: You were also mayor, right?
Ed: Yes, I was mayor and then went to state legislature. I finished a term for someone who died, them was elected to a two year term. I had to spend so much time in Harrisburg, I rented a one room apartment, when our children were still at home.  

TS: Tell us about your family at that time.
Ed: My first wife’s name was Adalyn, but she went by Lyn. Our first child is Linda McKee; she lives in Lancaster, she and her husband were in the winery business. It’s interesting that they ran a winery … I don’t drink. My next daughter is Alida; she lives in Hartford, Conn. I was in the army when she was born. My commanding officer was also awaiting a child’s birth, but he could not deny me leave to go see my baby. My youngest daughter is Nancy, who lives in Ohio. One of her daughters has become a doctor. 

We had a son, Edmund, who was murdered in front of our house. It was a terrible time when my son died.  

TS: Was it difficult to live in Swarthmore after that?
Ed: No, I didn’t blame it on the town. I blamed it entirely on the family who let their son go out with a big knife on him. The whole town was rocked by this. The memorial service was held in the meetinghouse which was filled and put up a lot of chairs outside. The next door neighbor started a foundation to fund the memorial scholarship in memory of Edmund A. Jones at Swarthmore College.

TS: Were you active in government after the Legislature?  Delaware County?
Ed: I’ve been involved in Delaware County Council, and served on the SEPTA board of directors. I’ve always been a rail buff. And when Blue Route was in planning, I and others went to Washington to meet … [and] the highway went on the other side of the Crum. 

TS: What has most changed in your time in Swarthmore?
Ed: The way it looks? The largest single change was the railroad underpass. The train crossing was not a mechanical operation. And I think the roundabout is a good way to keep traffic under control.

TS: Like the Blue Route, that was a big debate.
Ed: But an informed debate. This is a town full of intelligent people with diverse sets of skills and knowledge.  If you want to get something done in Swarthmore, you can probably find someone who knows how to do it.

Poetry Corner

2018 Swarthmore Spring

The brittle sticks of April, broken, prolific, scattered,
The ground, cold beneath exposing sparse green sprouts.
We walk around assessing debris,
Above, tall trees still bereft stand profiled.
Against the gray their branches ungreened
Appear as nerve endings gone awry.
Patterns, revealing no promise of spring. 

Remembering childhood’s carefree game,
Pick up sticks, a delicate retrieval of rainbows,
Carefully separated, slender colors extracted then
Dropped singularly for points.

Unlike our point, to rush, raking to collect in heaps
Before another untimely April blizzard
Arrives, covering what lies beneath.
These sticks, irregular, ungainly,
Differing shades of unpleasant brown.
Their clumped, clinging wetness webbed with leaves
Finally piled at the curb.

Nearby, the tender limbed bushes
Just a hint of green on their brittle branches.
We wonder, worry what ability to bend, to endure
Tonight’s wintry mix, to resist becoming brittle sticks.

The next day, cans of sticks emptied,
Just the street’s clutter to sweep.
In the sunshine my neighbor’s cherry tree
“Loveliest of trees” shares its glowing blossoms
Above a smattering of soft snow.
The light green grass underneath thankful
For last night’s flaked watering, more blessing than blizzard.

— Ann Foster

Ann Foster is a recent arrival to Swarthmore, coming from Florida via Bucks County. A retired high school English teacher, she has been more a reader of poetry than a poet, but says that “With my family now grown, I can indulge in and practice more writing.”

September

Threading the trail through spruce forest
Then hand over hand up a wooden ladder
Sweating, seeking foot holds
in the gray boulder face blooming with green lichen.
A chipmunk skitters into a crevice split by winter’s ice
at forty below

Muscles burning, we scramble over stone steps heaved
up by giants’ thunder breath.
A weasel slips between the silver birches

Breaking out onto the mountain top
We loll on sun warmed ledges
on the hawk fierce profile of
the mountain,
sentinel of
the glacial lake below

Two monarchs, then three
orange and black kaleidoscopes
wing, float and rise on thermal air
brushing by my shoulder

                        Vroom
It’s the vroom. The roar.
The charge across the grass,
blades flashing.
The grinding gears and breaking sticks.
The first lawn cut of spring
enchants his toddler heart. 

— Elizabeth Fletcher

Elizabeth Fletcher is a medical and technical writer and editor, and a published poet and essayist. She has lived in Swarthmore with her husband Fred Tinter and sons Alex and Evan for 30 years.

Fire Horn

This morning while out walking
that old fire horn startled me
(the way it always does)
like a newborn’s cry in the night

I cannot help but think of you when I hear it
so braided is the sound into my memory
like the everyday clatter of clearing plates 

I picture its howl rushing through high branches
of heroic oak and trembling ash to find me
to help me find you

We play Mastermind on the dusty oriental rug in the living room
sail around the world in creaking wicker baskets
eat Cheerios dry in the playhouse

I creep into mother and daddy’s room like a feral cat
strain to reach deep into the top of the highboy
scoop out quarters with my fingertips

I take you to Eddie’s market to buy Tootsie Rolls and Swedish Fish
make you hold my hand when we cross Yale Avenue
and promise not to tell that I got smokes instead of candy

We climb to the high part of the roof
lay back on the warm, feathering slate
we hoot and shout into the clouds

With each blare and pause of the fire horn
my mind clicks through our stockpile of scenes
A steady, visceral hum of connection

Until the siren quits and the hum returns to crackle

I hope one day you will just come home
maybe then the horn will sound but I won’t even hear it
or maybe it won’t sound, and I will not even notice it is gone

— Liz Morris Orye

Liz Orye is a Swarthmore native who now lives and writes in Wallingford. In between then and now, she lived for a decade in Virginia. She owns a petit floral design studio called Bough & Blossom.

El Capitan

The Captain of the Guadalupes
Stood on the desert plain
And sighted ‘cross
The Delawares
In hope of tropic rain

But to his wish
Came burning sun
And whispers
Parched and dry
From oceans drained
And forests dropped
Beneath the hard blue sky

My Captain, my Captain
Can not you hear the waves?
You used to be a massive reef
That stood out in the sea
Where urchins spawned with
Snails and worms and great
Sharks sported free?

Oh Captain, El Capitan
Your ship has gone aground
Where crabs and fish and
Tiny shrimp did once so much abound
Where now the yucca blossoms
And the ocotillo nods its head
Where lizards scamper in the sun
And horny toads make their bed

My Captain waits for rising tides
To bring the sea again
And sure enough, it will come
Though not this year or next
But in time’s long awaited pulse
The earth will sink, the ice caps melt
The planet will convulse

And silently the knife sharp waters
Will creep upon the land
Then will silver fish and octopi parade
For the Captain on revue
Where herds of elk now browse
The bushes of the heights
Still wet with morning dew.

— Christopher Ray

“El Capitan is a massive fossil coral reef that stands above a desert valley in far west Texas, south of Carlsbad Caverns. Not to be confused with El Capitan of Yosemite Park.”

The Vulture

The vulture cuts his silent turn
A carbon in the blue
His watchful rheumy eyes collect
The denizens in view
He spots some morsel
In the glade
On evolution’s wake
He comes behind the Reaper
As the rake.

— Christopher Ray

House Fire on Ogden Avenue

Photo by Rich Cresson

Firefighters were called to a dwelling fire on Ogden Avenue on Thursday, April 12, at 12:34 p.m. for a “building fire — in the eve outside the window.” Assistant Chief Rick Lee, one of the first arriving firefighters found a single family dwelling with fire extending from the 1st floor at the rear of the structure.

Due to the time of day, Chief Lee knew that manpower would be a critical issue. The first alarm dispatched five neighboring fire departments. This was quickly expanded to three alarms calling upon the resources of 16 fire departments from as far away as Aston and Haverford Twp. 

Photo by Gloria Ellers

The fire quickly extended up the exterior wall to the roof area. The fire’s head start combined with the lack of manpower and equipment forced firefighters to evacuate the structure until master streams could be deployed to knock down the bulk of the fire. At that time the interior attack was resumed until the fire was brought under control and finally extinguished. Luckily the house is situated midway between two fire hydrants so water supply was not an issue once apparatus arrived on scene. Apparatus remained on scene until approximately 4 p.m. 

The exact cause of the fire is under investigation by the Swarthmore Fire Marshal.

Photo by Bill Menke

Books for Teens and Preteens

By Carol Kennedy

April is National Library Month, and the Swarthmore Public Library has some brand-new titles for pre-teen and teen readers! Check these out!

Out of Tune by Norah McClintock. In this murder mystery, Riley figures out who killed one of her classmates, a girl who seemed to have everything going for her. It will keep mystery lovers turning pages.

Polaris by Michael Northrup. Adventure, science fiction. It is some time in the 1830s, and a group of young cabin attendants and deck hands find themselves alone on a large sailing vessel in the middle of a storm, just outside the mouth of the Amazon River. The adult crew has mutinied and deserted the ship. Meanwhile, something very scary and mysterious is lurking beneath the ocean’s surface. In a series of nail-biting episodes, the kids figure out how to survive. This is a great adventure story, with both historical and science-fiction elements. The action is non-stop.

Guide to Political Revolution by Bernie Sanders. In this accessible book, Sanders addresses young people and describes the issues he is most passionate about — health care reform, climate change, economic equality, Wall Street reform, higher education, immigration. He explains the need for economic justice and other changes he deems necessary. Illustrations help to break up the text and add a modicum of humor.

Deadly Wish by Sarah L. Thomson. This exciting adventure story, a sequel to Deadly Flowers, involves a female ninja warrior whose mission is to guard a magical pearl that harbors a demon. She has to transport the pearl through unknown lands, facing one danger after another as she encounters other ninjas, thieves, samurai, and monsters. Along the way, she faces many choices: to rely only on her own ninja skills or accept the help of friends? Use up her last wish, even though doing so will unleash a terrible demon upon the world? This book will appeal particularly to anyone who loves all things Japanese.

Devil in Ohio by Daria Polatin. Stephen King for the young-adult set. Mae is a teenage girl who comes from a small town where the residents practice Satanism. When she becomes part of Jules’ family, things begin to get stranger and stranger. Older teens will keep turning the pages of this suspense/horror story to try to figure out what secrets Mae is hiding, and why her family of Satan-worshippers is after her. The story will appeal to those who like suspense and have a taste for the macabre.

Carol Kennedy of Swarthmore is a retired school librarian and a member of the TriState Young Adult Review Committee (tristatereviews.org).