Bits 'n' Pieces: Keillor reads Poole’s poem on radio

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A poem from Scott Poole’s newest anthology gained national attention this week.

Poole, 41, of east Vancouver, sent his book “The Sliding Glass Door” to Garrison Keillor, host of the public radio show The Writer’s Almanac, after it was published about a month ago.

To Poole’s surprise, Keillor chose to read Poole’s poem “The Bible” on his Wednesday show.

“I’ve been trying with my first two books to get a poem on there,” Poole said. “He doesn’t pick a whole lot of new stuff, so this is exciting.”

The reading and Wednesday radio show are still available online at http://writersalmanac.publicradio.org.

“To be picked for the first time with the new book was kind of shocking,” Poole said. “It’s really the only national radio show that does poetry.”

Poole wrote the poem after pondering the inscription on a Bible owned by his wife.

“It’s kind of an imagist poem I suppose,” Poole said. “It’s reflective of having a Bible in your house. It’s not really religious or anything.”

One image that came into his head while looking at the Bible was of God signing books at a bookstore. In the poem, he also ponders where the Bible might have traveled.

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Author uses historical leaders as consulting team

Jerry Willbur chose an unusual consulting team to help him teach businesses and hospitals how to succeed. Willbur, 64, of Vancouver, works with companies all over the United States as an organizational psychologist.

In “Giant Killers,” one of his two new books, he decided to use a team of unlikely leaders as models to describe how to build successful team management strategies.

His team? Abraham Lincoln, Sojourner Truth, Joan of Arc and the Bible’s King David.

“I use these four as consultants to turn around a hotel that’s going out of business,” Willbur said. “I picked them because they really are some of the most unlikely people to succeed, and they actually succeeded.”

Willbur wrote “Giant Killers” and “Herding Hummingbirds” after being asked by publisher Corby Books of Notre Dame, Ind. The books, told in narrative form, kick off the publisher’s leadership series.

“I get called in to change the culture of places, especially hospitals,” said Willbur. “Hospitals, they’re realizing they have to be more patient-centered, and there’s a lot of pressure to control costs — and they also have to have a workforce that has good morale.”

“Herding Hummingbirds” tells the story of a team that turns around a failing software company.

Both books look at ways to recruit and keep talent and create positive morale on a team.

They are available online at http://www.corbypublishing.com.">www.corbypublishing.com.">http://www.corbypublishing.com.

Bits ’n’ Pieces appears Mondays and Fridays. If you have a story you’d like to share, call Ruth Zschomler, 360-735-4530, or email ruth.zschomler@columbian.com.