Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival: Poetry and Presence

Posted: October 19, 2012 in Events
Tags: , , , ,

(Pictured, left to right: Jane Hirshfield, Henri Cole, Arthur Sze)

Description from the 2012 Festival’s guide:

There is a quality of mindfulness, of staying present in the present, that poetry can foster in us, can sometimes require of us. Even a four hundred year old poem requires this kind of presence from us. This may have been what Mark Strand had in mind when he wrote that we must “slow down for poetry.” Festival Poets explore how this slowing down, this quality of presence and attentiveness, is essential to poetry, and also seems deeply connected to how we remain alive in the world with open eyes, ears, heart and mind.

What actually happened:
Due to a missed train, we join in progress a Conversation between audience and poets that wanders between presence of poet in poet, of poet in their writing, of poet in world and vice-versa. How do the inclinations of introverts reflect something essential enough to the outside world as to reap an effect from those who give their presence to it? Why does it seem lyric poems epitomize presence? The most wonderful aspect of this panel was the degree of influence the poets seemed to have on each other, often leaving the next to speak dumbfounded for having exposed a greater truth…like reading a poem. Give a listen! Then maybe, if you think more discussions like this should take place, go donate a few bucks to the Foundation that made it possible.

Know your voices:
First speaker – Henri Cole
Second speaker – Jane Hirshfield
Third speaker – Arthur Sze

*This recording is not sanctioned by the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival or its associated Foundation and is solely offered in faith that 1) no-one reads this blog anyway, 2) it was for the benefit of poetry and those who appreciate poetry that the event took place, and 3) supposedly the Foundation’s own YouTube channel will soon offer coverage of this event anyhoo. In short: please don’t sue. Email me, and I will remove the link permanently as well as delete the files in question from their source.


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