Category Archives: Poetry

Benjamin Alire Sáenz with Cecilia Ballí, Reading, 16 April 2014 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on April 16, 2014.

This event was part of the Lannan Literary Series

Benjamin Alire Sáenz’s latest book, Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club, is a collection of stories whose characters are all tied in one way or another to this famed watering hole on the Avenida Juárez, where the author says, “people go when they’re in trouble, when they’re looking for trouble or when they’re trying to get out of trouble.” A prolific writer and master of many genres, his books include the novel Carry Me Like Water, the young adult book Sammy & Juliana in Hollywood, and the poetry collection Dark and Perfect Angels.

Named one of 2010’s “Fifty of the Most Inspiring Authors in the World” by Poets & Writers magazine, Sáenz studied philosophy and theology and was a Wallace E. Stegner fellow in poetry at Stanford University. Born in Old Picacho, New Mexico in 1954, Sáenz has been a member of the faculty at the University of Texas at El Paso since 1992.

In this episode he is introduced by Cecilia Ballí and then read from his work. The companion Conversation episode may be found here.

You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also listen to the audio recording of this event there.

Additional photos of this event are available on Flickr.

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Carrie Fountain with Naomi Shihab Nye, 16 March 2014 – Video

Recorded at the Lannan Foundation in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 16, 2014, as part of Lannan’s Poetry Sundays.

Carrie Fountain’s poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Tin House, and Poetry, among other publications. Her debut collection, Burn Lake, was a 2009 National Poetry Series winner and was published in 2010 by Penguin. Born and raised in Mesilla, New Mexico, Fountain received her MFA as a fellow at the James A. Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas and teaches at St. Edward’s University in Austin, where she lives with her husband, the playwright Kirk Lynn, and their two children. Her second collection, Instant Winner, will be published by Penguin in October of 2014.

You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also listen to the audio recording of this event there.

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Carrie Fountain with Naomi Shihab Nye, 16 March 2014 – Audio

Recorded at the Lannan Foundation in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 16, 2014, as part of Lannan’s Poetry Sundays.

Carrie Fountain with Naomi Shihab Nye

Carrie Fountain’s poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Tin House, and Poetry, among other publications. Her debut collection, Burn Lake, was a 2009 National Poetry Series winner and was published in 2010 by Penguin. Born and raised in Mesilla, New Mexico, Fountain received her MFA as a fellow at the James A. Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas and teaches at St. Edward’s University in Austin, where she lives with her husband, the playwright Kirk Lynn, and their two children. Her second collection, Instant Winner, will be published by Penguin in October of 2014.

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You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also view the video recording of this event there.

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Going On by Peter Reading – Audio

Going On, Peter Reading, 1985
Publisher: Bloodaxe (included in Collected Poems 2: Poems 1985-1996)

Graphic for Peter Reading, Going On

“What he [Peter Reading] uniquely had was an obsessive craftsmanship, at ease with every kind of verse-form, matched with a macabre, bizarre sense of humour. He relished the stately and the ceremonial, as much as he kept his ears open for the demotic, the inarticulate, the speechless.” — Anthony Thwaite, The Independent, December 2011

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website.

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Ukulele Music by Peter Reading – Audio

Ukulele Music, Peter Reading, 1985
Publisher: Bloodaxe (included in Collected Poems 2: Poems 1985-1996)

graphic for Peter Reading, Ukulele Music

“Like a ventriloquist, in Ukelele Music, Reading intermittently assumes the voice of an obsequious charwoman named Viv, trying to cadge some money from her master, and at other times that of a chronicler of gruesome naval battles and mishaps. What the seemingly unrelated spheres have in common is the dire state of ‘H. sap.,’ or homo sapiens, examined in gruesome detail. His obsession with the gross has led British reviewers to call Reading’s humor ‘too black’–a criticism ushered into his poems, along with a reply: ‘What do they think they’re playing at, then, these Poetry Wallahs?’ The poet proclaims that, ‘this is the Age Of The Greatly Bewildered Granny & Grandad, / shitlessly scared by the bad, mindless and jobless and young.'” —Publisher’s Weekly, August 1994

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website.

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Vendange Tardive by Peter Reading – Audio

Vendange Tardive, Peter Reading, 2010
Publisher: Bloodaxe Books

graphic for Peter Reading, Vendange Tardive

Vendange Tardive is a late harvest of vintage Reading in disaster mode. Here is a rueful crop of valedictory poems in which man reaps what he sows: shipwreck, ruin, death, war, ignomony and extinction. But somehow, amid all that, there is still the fruit of the vine and the bittersweet spirit of life.” – Bloodaxe Books

“A vendange tardive is a late-harvest wine, and the title poem records the gift of a bottle on the poet’s 62nd birthday. Another poem, ‘All Is Safely Gathered In’, in which he offers thanks for a birthday bottle of champagne, bluntly begins: ‘Morituri te salutant’ (we who are about to die salute you). While this book marks Reading’s return to a collection of individual pieces, it still coheres as he weaves multiple threads in which deaths of family members and friends mix with the deleterious effects of oil-dependent economies, compounded by a day-to-day awareness that not only is the self at the age of ‘late harvest’, but in the face of climate change, so is the whole human race.” – Carrie Etter, The Guardian.

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website. You may also watch a video of these poems being read by Peter Reading there as well.

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-273.15 by Peter Reading – Audio

-273.15, Peter Reading, 2005
Publisher: Bloodaxe Books

graphic for Peter Reading, -273.15

-273.15 [absolute zero] is a lament, a tirade, a disaster warning, and an anthropologist’s catalogue of our final expedition addressed to an earlier survivor of global catastrophe, Noah of the Flood.
“Despair, both environmental and political, is never absent; but this is an appreciative, defiantly humane volume.” – Robert Potts, The Guardian.

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website. You may also watch a video of these poems being read by Peter Reading there as well.

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by Peter Reading – Audio

, Peter Reading, 2003
Publisher: Bloodaxe Books

graphic for Peter Reading 2003, "delete"

Reading’s death statement features his “death mask on the cover.” His own consolations of “verse, viticulture and love” are mirrored in the extended swansong of Chinoiserie, a sequence of versions of the 8th-century Chinese poet Li Po, while the blunter associations of his title are encrypted in the book’s progressively shorter lyrics: obsolete, obscene and obit (he died). Now out of print, this book is included in Collected Poems Volume III: Poems 1997-2003 (2003, Bloodaxe).

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website. You may also watch a video of these poems being read by Peter Reading there as well.

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Faunal by Peter Reading – Audio

Faunal, Peter Reading, 2002
Publisher: Bloodaxe

graphic for Peter Reading, Faunal

This new volume opens with a quote from Charles Darwin: “We will now discuss in a little more detail the struggle for existence.” Faunal is a book of poems about animals, or more specifically about Reading’s real or imagined experiences of the beasts of the earth, and of the most powerful beast of all, humanity. The poems are peppered with Latin names which function as tags marking the animal world as the property of the linguistic universe constructed by people, and Reading’s main attention here is to the ways in which people interact with animals, usually to the detriment of the latter.
(Courtesy of John Sears)

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

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You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website.

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Civil by Peter Reading – Audio

Civil, Peter Reading, 2002
Publisher: Bloodaxe Books

graphic for Peter Reading, Civil

This book, now out of print, is included in Collected Poems Volume III: Poems 1997-2003 (2003, Bloodaxe).

Portions of this podcast are explicit and may contain adult language.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

You may learn more about Peter Reading on the Lannan website. You may also watch a video of these poems being read by Peter Reading there as well.

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