Category Archives: Poetry

Sebastian Barry with Daniel Mendelsohn, Reading, 1 May 2019 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on May 1, 2019.

Sebastian Barry is a novelist, poet, and playwright. His latest book, Days without End (2016), tells the story of Thomas McNulty, a 17-year-old fleeing the Great Famine in Ireland by enlisting in the U.S. Army in the 1850s. He is sent to fight Sioux and Yurok Indians and, ultimately, fights in the Civil War. The central love story of the novel is between two men and was inspired by Barry’s son’s homosexual relationship. Of his son’s relationship, Barry states, “I look at them and I think, ‘This is not something that needs our tolerance, this is something we should be emulating. There is magnificence here of soul.'”

The New York Times calls Days without End “a dreamlike Western with a different kind of hero.” He is “an orphan, a refugee from Ireland’s Great Famine, a crack shot, a cross-dresser and a halfhearted soldier, but mostly he’s in love with a young man.” In the novel Barry writes, “A man’s memory might have only a hundred clear days in it and he has lived thousands. Can’t do much about that. We have our store of days and we spend them like forgetful drunkards.” Days without End won the 2017 Costa Book of the Year Award, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction and the Independent Bookseller’s Award.

Barry’s plays include The Steward of Christendom (1995), Our Lady of Sligo (1998), and The Pride of Parnell Street (2007). His novels include A Long Long Way (2005); The Secret Scripture (2008), named Novel of the Year by the Irish Book Awards and Costa Book of the Year; and The Temporary Gentleman (2014). He has won, among other awards, the Kerry Group Irish Fiction Prize, the Independent Booksellers Prize, and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. A Long Long Way and the top-10 best seller The Secret Scripture were short-listed for the Man Booker Prize. He was born in Dublin in 1955 and lives in County Wicklow, Ireland.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Sebastian Barry was introduced by Daniel Mendelsohn, then read from his work. You can find the companion conversation here.

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

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Sebastian Barry with Daniel Mendelsohn, Conversation, 1 May 2019 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on May 1, 2019.

Sebastian Barry is a novelist, poet, and playwright. His latest book, Days without End (2016), tells the story of Thomas McNulty, a 17-year-old fleeing the Great Famine in Ireland by enlisting in the U.S. Army in the 1850s. He is sent to fight Sioux and Yurok Indians and, ultimately, fights in the Civil War. The central love story of the novel is between two men and was inspired by Barry’s son’s homosexual relationship. Of his son’s relationship, Barry states, “I look at them and I think, ‘This is not something that needs our tolerance, this is something we should be emulating. There is magnificence here of soul.'”

The New York Times calls Days without End “a dreamlike Western with a different kind of hero.” He is “an orphan, a refugee from Ireland’s Great Famine, a crack shot, a cross-dresser and a halfhearted soldier, but mostly he’s in love with a young man.” In the novel Barry writes, “A man’s memory might have only a hundred clear days in it and he has lived thousands. Can’t do much about that. We have our store of days and we spend them like forgetful drunkards.” Days without End won the 2017 Costa Book of the Year Award, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction and the Independent Bookseller’s Award.

Barry’s plays include The Steward of Christendom (1995), Our Lady of Sligo (1998), and The Pride of Parnell Street (2007). His novels include A Long Long Way (2005); The Secret Scripture (2008), named Novel of the Year by the Irish Book Awards and Costa Book of the Year; and The Temporary Gentleman (2014). He has won, among other awards, the Kerry Group Irish Fiction Prize, the Independent Booksellers Prize, and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. A Long Long Way and the top-10 best seller The Secret Scripture were short-listed for the Man Booker Prize. He was born in Dublin in 1955 and lives in County Wicklow, Ireland.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Sebastian Barry joined Daniel Mendelsohn in conversation. You can find the companion reading here.

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

Possibly Related Posts:

Sebastian Barry with Daniel Mendelsohn, 1 May 2019 – Audio

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on May 1, 2019.

Sebastian Barry is a novelist, poet, and playwright. His latest book, Days without End (2016), tells the story of Thomas McNulty, a 17-year-old fleeing the Great Famine in Ireland by enlisting in the U.S. Army in the 1850s. He is sent to fight Sioux and Yurok Indians and, ultimately, fights in the Civil War. The central love story of the novel is between two men and was inspired by Barry’s son’s homosexual relationship. Of his son’s relationship, Barry states, “I look at them and I think, ‘This is not something that needs our tolerance, this is something we should be emulating. There is magnificence here of soul.'”

The New York Times calls Days without End “a dreamlike Western with a different kind of hero.” He is “an orphan, a refugee from Ireland’s Great Famine, a crack shot, a cross-dresser and a halfhearted soldier, but mostly he’s in love with a young man.” In the novel Barry writes, “A man’s memory might have only a hundred clear days in it and he has lived thousands. Can’t do much about that. We have our store of days and we spend them like forgetful drunkards.” Days without End won the 2017 Costa Book of the Year Award, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction and the Independent Bookseller’s Award.

Barry’s plays include The Steward of Christendom (1995), Our Lady of Sligo (1998), and The Pride of Parnell Street (2007). His novels include A Long Long Way (2005); The Secret Scripture (2008), named Novel of the Year by the Irish Book Awards and Costa Book of the Year; and The Temporary Gentleman (2014). He has won, among other awards, the Kerry Group Irish Fiction Prize, the Independent Booksellers Prize, and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. A Long Long Way and the top-10 best seller The Secret Scripture were short-listed for the Man Booker Prize. He was born in Dublin in 1955 and lives in County Wicklow, Ireland.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also watch the videos of this event there. Photos from this event are available on Flickr.

Possibly Related Posts:

Tracy K. Smith with Joy Harjo, Reading, 6 February 2019 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on February 6, 2019.

Tracy K. Smith was appointed the 22nd United States poet laureate in 2017 and was reappointed for a second term in 2018. During her first term, Smith gave readings and led discussions as a part of a pilot project in rural communities in New Mexico, South Carolina, and Kentucky. She has continued to pursue engagements in small towns across America, stating, “Poetry invites us to listen to other voices, to make space for other perspectives, and to care about the lives of others who may not look, sound or think like ourselves.” Her poem “The United States Welcomes You” begins:

Why and by whose power were you sent?
What do you see that you may wish to steal?
Why this dancing? Why do your dark bodies
Drink up all the light?

Her memoir Ordinary Light (2016) was described by the Guardian as “A powerful meditation on being a daughter and, by the end, on being a mother, too.” In it she writes of her mother’s impending death: “When the dark outside was real*not just the dark of approaching winter, and not just the dark of rain, which we’d had for days, too*her dying came on. We recognized it. We circled her bed, though we stopped short of holding hands, perhaps because that gesture would have meant we were holding on, and we were finally ready to let her go.”

Smith has published four books of poetry: Wade in the Water (2018); Life on Mars, which received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book; Duende (2006); and The Body’s Question, winner of the 2002 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard, earned her MFA at Columbia, and was a Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University from 1997 to 1999. She is the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Professor in the Humanities and director of the Creative Writing Program at Princeton University. She lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Tracy K. Smith joined Joy Harjo in conversation. You can find the companion conversation here.

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

Possibly Related Posts:

Tracy K. Smith with Joy Harjo, Conversation, 6 February 2019 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on February 6, 2019.

Tracy K. Smith was appointed the 22nd United States poet laureate in 2017 and was reappointed for a second term in 2018. During her first term, Smith gave readings and led discussions as a part of a pilot project in rural communities in New Mexico, South Carolina, and Kentucky. She has continued to pursue engagements in small towns across America, stating, “Poetry invites us to listen to other voices, to make space for other perspectives, and to care about the lives of others who may not look, sound or think like ourselves.” Her poem “The United States Welcomes You” begins:

Why and by whose power were you sent?
What do you see that you may wish to steal?
Why this dancing? Why do your dark bodies
Drink up all the light?

Her memoir Ordinary Light (2016) was described by the Guardian as “A powerful meditation on being a daughter and, by the end, on being a mother, too.” In it she writes of her mother’s impending death: “When the dark outside was real*not just the dark of approaching winter, and not just the dark of rain, which we’d had for days, too*her dying came on. We recognized it. We circled her bed, though we stopped short of holding hands, perhaps because that gesture would have meant we were holding on, and we were finally ready to let her go.”

Smith has published four books of poetry: Wade in the Water (2018); Life on Mars, which received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book; Duende (2006); and The Body’s Question, winner of the 2002 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard, earned her MFA at Columbia, and was a Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University from 1997 to 1999. She is the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Professor in the Humanities and director of the Creative Writing Program at Princeton University. She lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Tracy K. Smith joined Joy Harjo in conversation. You can find the companion reading here.

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

Possibly Related Posts:

Tracy K. Smith with Joy Harjo, 6 February 2019 – Audio

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on February 6, 2019.

Trady K. Smith with Joy Harjo

Tracy K. Smith was appointed the 22nd United States poet laureate in 2017 and was reappointed for a second term in 2018. During her first term, Smith gave readings and led discussions as a part of a pilot project in rural communities in New Mexico, South Carolina, and Kentucky. She has continued to pursue engagements in small towns across America, stating, “Poetry invites us to listen to other voices, to make space for other perspectives, and to care about the lives of others who may not look, sound or think like ourselves.” Her poem “The United States Welcomes You” begins:

Why and by whose power were you sent?
What do you see that you may wish to steal?
Why this dancing? Why do your dark bodies
Drink up all the light?

Her memoir Ordinary Light (2016) was described by the Guardian as “A powerful meditation on being a daughter and, by the end, on being a mother, too.” In it she writes of her mother’s impending death: “When the dark outside was real*not just the dark of approaching winter, and not just the dark of rain, which we’d had for days, too*her dying came on. We recognized it. We circled her bed, though we stopped short of holding hands, perhaps because that gesture would have meant we were holding on, and we were finally ready to let her go.”

Smith has published four books of poetry: Wade in the Water (2018); Life on Mars, which received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book; Duende (2006); and The Body’s Question, winner of the 2002 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard, earned her MFA at Columbia, and was a Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University from 1997 to 1999. She is the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Professor in the Humanities and director of the Creative Writing Program at Princeton University. She lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also watch the videos of this event there. Photos from this event are available on Flickr.

Possibly Related Posts:

Roxane Gay with Tressie McMillan Cottom, Reading, 14 March 2018 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 14, 2018.

Roxane Gay is an author and cultural critic. Her works include the story collection Difficult Women and Ayiti, a blend of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry interwoven into a tale of the Haitian diaspora. In her essay collection Bad Feminist, she writes, “I never want to be placed on a Feminist Pedestal. People who are placed on pedestals are expected to pose, perfectly. Then they get knocked off…. Consider me already knocked off.”

Gay’s most recent book is Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body. The New York Times writes, “At its simplest, it’s a memoir about being fat — Gay’s preferred term — in a hostile, fat-phobic world. At its most symphonic, it’s an intellectually rigorous and deeply moving exploration of the ways in which trauma, stories, desire, language and metaphor shape our experiences and construct our reality.”

Gay is the author of the comic series World of Wakanda and is the first African American woman to write for Marvel Comics. She is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Roxane Gay was introduced by Tressie McMillan Cottom, then talked about her work. You can find the companion conversation here.

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

Possibly Related Posts:

Roxane Gay with Tressie McMillan Cottom, Conversation, 14 March 2018 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 14, 2018.

Roxane Gay is an author and cultural critic. Her works include the story collection Difficult Women and Ayiti, a blend of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry interwoven into a tale of the Haitian diaspora. In her essay collection Bad Feminist, she writes, “I never want to be placed on a Feminist Pedestal. People who are placed on pedestals are expected to pose, perfectly. Then they get knocked off…. Consider me already knocked off.”

Gay’s most recent book is Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body. The New York Times writes, “At its simplest, it’s a memoir about being fat — Gay’s preferred term — in a hostile, fat-phobic world. At its most symphonic, it’s an intellectually rigorous and deeply moving exploration of the ways in which trauma, stories, desire, language and metaphor shape our experiences and construct our reality.”

Gay is the author of the comic series World of Wakanda and is the first African American woman to write for Marvel Comics. She is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, Roxane Gay joined Tressie McMillan Cottom in conversation. You can find the companion reading here.

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

Possibly Related Posts:

Roxane Gay with Tressie McMillan Cottom, 14 March 2018 – Audio

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 14, 2018.

Roxane Gay

Roxane Gay is an author and cultural critic. Her works include the story collection Difficult Women and Ayiti, a blend of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry interwoven into a tale of the Haitian diaspora. In her essay collection Bad Feminist, she writes, “I never want to be placed on a Feminist Pedestal. People who are placed on pedestals are expected to pose, perfectly. Then they get knocked off…. Consider me already knocked off.”

Gay’s most recent book is Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body. The New York Times writes, “At its simplest, it’s a memoir about being fat — Gay’s preferred term — in a hostile, fat-phobic world. At its most symphonic, it’s an intellectually rigorous and deeply moving exploration of the ways in which trauma, stories, desire, language and metaphor shape our experiences and construct our reality.”

Gay is the author of the comic series World of Wakanda and is the first African American woman to write for Marvel Comics. She is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

You may learn more about this event on the Lannan website; you may also watch the videos of this event there. Photos from this event are available on Flickr.

Possibly Related Posts:

Eileen Myles with Dan Chiasson, Conversation, 15 February 2017 – Video

Recorded at the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico on February 15, 2017.

Eileen Myles is the author of more than a dozen volumes of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, including Snowflake/different streets, Sorry, Tree, Chelsea Girls, Not Me, Skies, Cool for You, The Importance of Being Iceland: Travel Essays in Art, and Inferno: A Poet’s Novel, winner of the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, and coeditor of The New Fuck You/Adventures in Lesbian Reading. Her autobiographical novel Chelsea Girls, originally published in 1994 and reissued in 2015, brings together snapshot-like memories from her 1960s Catholic upbringing with an alcoholic father, her difficult teen years, her committed embrace of lesbianism, and her life as a poet in 1970s New York, which she describes as “a glowing cord of drunkenness and sex.” Myles’s book I Must Be Living Twice: New and Selected Poems 1975-2014, was described by John Ashbery as being “like a gasp of fresh air in the turbulent urban environment she writes from.” Myles has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Warhol/Creative Capital Arts Writers Grant, and the Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America. She contributes to a wide number of publications, including ArtForum, Bookforum, Parkett, and The Believer. Myles lives in New York and Marfa, Texas, and is a professor emeritus at the University of California San Diego.

This was a Readings and Conversations event.

In this episode, she is joined in Conversation with Dan Chiasson. The companion Reading 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.

Possibly Related Posts: