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Home > SC Poetry Archives > The Ninety-Six Press > Catalog > Bennie Lee Sinclair

The Endangered

Paperback, 6 inches by 9 inches
61 pages, perfect bound
$10.00 (40% discount to bookstores)


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Dr. Gilbert Allen
Department of English
Furman University
3300 Poinsett Highway
Greenville, SC 29613

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At the time of her death in 2000, Bennie Lee Sinclair was the Poet Laureate of South Carolina. Her third book of poems, Lord of Springs, won the Appalachian Writers Association Book of the Year Award for 1990. Her other awards included a Stephen Vincent Benet Narrative Poem Award, a Best American Short Stories citation, and a South Carolina Writers Award.

Her first novel, The Lynching, was published in 1991. The novel is based on the story of Willie Earle, who was lynched in Greenville County, South Carolina, in 1947.

Bennie Lee Sinclair lived and worked at her home Wildernesse, in the South Carolina mountains near Cleveland. A Greenville native, Sinclair was a 1961 graduate of Furman University and was awarded an Honorary Degree in Humanities in 1998. Sinclair passed away on May 22, 2000.

Going Blind

First, footnotes slide like tears
from the page. Next, the smaller creatures—
birds, mice—disappear. Then, most amazing,
friends’ faces; a loved one’s hands.

In the back of the eye, blood
collects, a dark shadow. Hospital, pain . . .
What does it matter, Eliot’s bank’s address,
a scurrying blur, tanager’s flame?

Yet, last, anything worth a try:
surgeon’s knife, laser’s beam, a Gypsy’s
casting of cards, palms;

even prayer.

—Copyright 1992 Bennie Lee Sinclair