Join poets Sachiko Murakami (Render), A.F. Moritz (As Far As You Know), and Randy Lundy (Field Notes for the Self), as they traverse a series of befores and
Join poets Sachiko Murakami (Render), A.F. Moritz (As Far As You Know), and Randy Lundy (Field Notes for the Self), as they traverse a series of befores and afters, experiencing the darknesses of life and exploring what comes after. Moderated by Kirby, knife | fork | book. Closed captioning sponsored by House of Anansi Press and Groundwood Books.
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AF Moritz currently serves as the sixth poet laureate of the City of Toronto. His many honours include a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Bess Hokin Prize, and an Ingram Merrill Fellowship.
KIRBY is the author of WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE CALLED? (Anstruther Press, 2020) THIS IS WHERE I GET OFF (Permanent Sleep Press, 2019) SHE’S HAVING A DORIS DAY (knife | fork | book, 2017), and forthcoming POETRY IS QUEER (Palimpsest, Fall 2021) jeffkirby.ca
Randy Lundy is a member of the Barren Lands (Cree) First Nation. Born in northern Manitoba, he has lived most of his life in Saskatchewan. He has published three previous books, Under the Night Sun, Gift of the Hawk, and Blackbird Song. An award-winning poet, his work has been widely anthologized.
Sachiko Murakami is the author of three previous poetry collections, including The Invisibility Exhibit (shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award). As a literary worker, she has edited poetry, worked for trade organizations, hosted reading series, organized conferences, sat on juries, and judged prizes.
As Far As You Know
Written and organized chronologically around before and after the poet’s serious illness and heart surgery in 2014, these gorgeously unguarded poems plumb and deepen the reader’s understanding of Moritz’s primary and ongoing obsessions: beauty, impermanence, history, social conscience and responsibility, and, always and most urgently, love. For all its necessary engagement with worry, sorrow, and fragility, As Far As You Know sings a final insistent chorus to what it loves: “You will live.”
Field Notes for the Self
Field Notes for the Self is a series of dark meditations: spiritual exercises in which the poem becomes a forensics of the soul. The poems converse with Patrick Lane, John Thompson, and Charles Wright, but their closest cousins may be Arvo Pärt’s tintinnabulations—overlapping structures in which notes or images are rung slowly and repeatedly like bells. The goal is freedom from illusion, freedom from memory, from “the same old stories” of Lundy’s violent past; and freedom, too, from the unreachable memories of the violence done to his Indigenous ancestors, which, Lundy tells us, seem to haunt his cellular biology.
Journey through dreamscapes in Sachiko Murakami’s intimate and unflinching poetic memoir as she travels the non-linear path of addiction to recovery, how it shifts over time, and what happens when it is translated through poetry. Looking beyond the straightforward, happily-ever-after narrative, Murakami wades through the aftermath of her addiction and questions what happens to trauma when it is put down on the page – and all the ways in which it can be rendered. Recovery is a jagged line, but hope lives and crystallizes in every moment we can mark ourselves “#stillhere.”
(Sunday) 11:00 am - 11:45 pm EST