Bard Center Presents Spring 2008 John Ashbery Poetry Series
Reading Features Visiting Poet Forrest Gander Paired with Bard Professor Joan Retallack
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.— The John Ashbery Poetry Series at Bard College presents a reading by poet and novelist Forrest Gander, and poet and Bard professor Joan Retallack on Tuesday, April 29. John Ashbery, Charles P. Stevenson, Jr. Professor of Languages and Literature at Bard, introduces the readers. Free and open to the public, the reading, presented by The Bard Center, begins at 6:00 p.m. in Manor Parlor.
Born in the Mojave Desert in Barstow, California, Forrest Gander grew up in Virginia and spent significant periods in San Francisco, Dolores Hidalgo (Mexico), and Eureka Springs, Arkansas, before moving to Rhode Island. He holds degrees in both English literature and geology. The author of numerous poetry collections, including Eye Against Eye, Torn Awake, and Science & Steepleflower, Gander also writes novels (As a Friend, forthcoming this year from New Directions), and essays (“A Faithful Existence”), and translates; his most recent translations are Firefly Under the Tongue: Selected Poems of Coral Bracho; No Shelter: Selected Poems of Pura Lopez-Colome, and, with Kent Johnson, two books by the Bolivian wunderkind Jaime Saenz: The Night and Immanent Visitor: Selected Poems of Jaime Saenz. Gander’s poems appear in many literary magazines in the United States and abroad, and have been translated into half-a-dozen languages. Several books in translation are available in Mexico (Zumba el Transcurrir: Poemas Escojidos and Arrancado del Sueno), Chile (Traduciendo a Saenz y Otros Poemas), and the Netherlands (Twelve X 12:00). He has received two Gertrude Stein Awards for Innovative North American Poetry, fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, and awards from the Fund for Poetry, Howard Foundation, and Whiting Foundation. Gander lives in Rhode Island with poet C. D. Wright and their son, Brecht. As professor of English and comparative literature at Brown University, he teaches courses such as “Poetry/World/Mind,” “EcoPoetics,” “Latin American Poetry Live,” and “Translation Theory & Practice.”
Joan Retallack’s volume of poetry Memnoir was published in 2004 simultaneously in English and French. She is the author of six other poetry collections, including How To Do Things with Words, AFTERRIMAGES, and Errata 5uite, which won the Columbia Book Award. Her book of critical essays, The Poethical Wager, was published by the University of California Press, which will also bring out her book on Gertrude Stein. Poetry and Pedagogy: The Challenge of the Contemporary, coedited by Retallack and Juliana Spahr, was published by Palgrave/MacMillan. Retallack received a Lannan Foundation Literary Grant for Poetry in
1998 and the 1996 America Award in Belles-Lettres for MUSICAGE: John Cage in Conversation with Joan Retallack. Her WESTORN CIV CONT’D, a limited edition artist’s book, was produced at Pyramid Atlantic Studios in 1995–96 with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. Retallack is John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Professor of Humanities at Bard College.
Since 1995, the John Ashbery Poetry Series has brought leading contemporary poets to Bard for readings and discussion in an intimate setting. For further information about the series, call The Bard Center at 845-758-7425.
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