Poetry at the Library - Spring 2021 Series
The Virtual Poetry at the Library Series caps its 2020-21 season with the vibrant voices of award-winning Black poets Krysten Hill and Cynthia Manick in conversation with poet-editor Joyce Peseroff.
Krysten Hill and Cynthia Hill: A Reading and Conversation with Poet-Editor Joyce Peseroff
Sunday, May 16, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Krysten Hill (photo credit: Jonathan Beckley) reads from How Her Spirit Got Out, winner of the 2017 Jean Pedrick Chapbook Prize. These poems are lively, urgent songs of the writers whose voices raised her and the women who brought her up. Their guidance helps her navigate the complicated landscape of selfhood and bear witness to an age of racial violence. The recipient of the 2016 St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artist Award and a 2020 Mass Cultural Council Poetry Fellowship, Hill’s work has been featured in The Academy of American Poets, apt, B O D Y, Boiler Magazine, Up the Staircase Quarterly, Muzzle, PANK,Tinderbox Poetry Journal, Winter Tangerine Review and elsewhere. She teaches creative writing at the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Cynthia Manick (photo credit: Sue Rissberger) reads from Blue Hallelujahs, her debut collection of confident, powerful meditations about family, womanhood, and racial histories. In its praise, poet Nikky Finney says “What we remember is what we become…Manick holds fast to what brought us across…the things that lock the arms of Black people around Black people when we need what we need to keep moving on. I am so grateful to this sweet box of sacred words.” Winner of the Lascaux Prize in Collected Poetry, Manick is the editor of Soul Sister Revue: A Poetry Compilation (Jamii Publishing, 2019) and The Future of Black: Afrofuturism and Black Comics Poetry (Blair Publishing, forthcoming 2021). She has received fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, MacDowell Colony, and Château de la Napoule among others. Her poem "Things I Carry Into the World" was made into a film by Motionpoems, an organization dedicated to video poetry, and has debuted on Tidal for National Poetry Month. A performer at literary festivals, libraries, universities, and most recently the Brooklyn Museum, Manick’s work has appeared in the Academy of American Poets Poem-A-Day Series, Callaloo, Los Angeles Review of Books (LARB), The Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. She currently serves on the board of the International Women’s Writing Guild and the editorial board of Alice James Books.
Joyce Peseroff’s most recent, sixth poetry collection is Petition (Carnegie Mellon University Press, Fall, 2020.) She edited Robert Bly: When Sleepers Awake, The Ploughshares Poetry Reader, and Simply Lasting: Writers on Jane Kenyon. Her fifth book of poems, Know Thyself, was designated a “must read” by the 2016 Massachusetts Book Award. Recent poems and reviews appear in American Journal of Poetry, Consequence, On the Seawall, Massachusetts Review, Plume, Salamander, and on the website The Woven Tale Press. Her honors include grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Artists Foundation as well as a Pushcart Prize. She directed and taught in UMass Boston’s MFA Program in its first four years. Currently she blogs for her website and writes a poetry column for Arrowsmith Press.
The Friends of the Concord Free Public Library are pleased to announce their Spring line-up of diverse and award-winning poets whose work resonates, reaches out to the world, and illuminates our shared humanity. Each Sunday afternoon program (beginning at 3:00 p.m.) includes two poets reading from their recent collections and participating in discussion and Q & A about their practice. All are welcome. This series is sponsored by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library.
April Guests -
Andrea Cohen and Palestinian American Poet-Physician Fady Joudah
Sunday, April 18, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Andrea Cohen reads from her playful seventh collection Everything, praised by The New York Times for poems that take us on “long journeys to unfamiliar places.” Publishers’ Weekly notes that “it is the wit that astounds here, and an intelligence that sees the world anew." Cohen’s poems and stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The Threepenny Review, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Republic, and elsewhere. Cohen has received a PEN Discovery Award, Glimmer Train's Short Fiction Award, and several fellowships at The MacDowell Colony. Cohen directs the Blacksmith House Poetry Series in Cambridge.
Fady Joudah reads from Tethered to Stars that “reaches for the heavens…while remaining grounded in the everyday”, as noted in his recent PBS News Hour interview on how his love for poetry helps him communicate with patients better. Joudah is a Yale Younger Poet, chosen by Louise Gluck, the 2020 Nobel Prize winner, and winner of The Griffin Poetry Prize for translations from the Arabic. Among his other honors are a PEN award, a Banipal/Times Literary Supplement prize from the UK, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Joudah’s other collections include Footnotes in the Order of Disappearance (Milkweed Editions, 2018), Textu (Copper Canyon Press, 2013), Alight (Copper Canyon, 2013), and The Earth in the Attic (Yale University Press, 2008.) He is the co-editor and co-founder of the Etel Adnan Poetry Prize. He practices internal medicine in Houston where he lives with his family.
March Guests -
Sunday, March 21, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Allison Adair’s The Clearing, winner of the 2020 Max Ritvo Poetry Prize, is “a lush, lyrical book about a world where women are meant to carry things to safety and men leave decisively.” Adair teaches at Boston College. Tiana Clark’s debut collection, I Can’t Talk About the Trees Without the Blood, winner of the 2020 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, dives into personal and public history, memories, mythology, her own ancestry, to see the braided trauma of the broken past and its continued effects on black lives.