Sunday, June 29, 2008

John Murillo and Suzanne Zweizig at Miller Cabin

On June 24 our series continued, featuring John Murillo and Suzanne Zweizig. John’s poems captured us easily with their music and images. Poems like “The Corner” and “Trouble Man” pulled us into a tough world of song as well as sorrow.

Suzanne’s poems took us on a trip to Europe and to Israel. We found her work to be full of memorable surprises: “the crowd spills in little archipelagos,” “a woman with heightened eyebrows reapplies her champagne in moderate gulps,” “bones surf the ground,” “the world hung like a piano out the window to spin.”

It was a refreshing and energizing evening at the cabin! Please join us July 1 at 7:30 to welcome poets John O’Dell and Katy Richey. Bring your friends! Come early to sign up for the open mic.

An AU Evening at Miller Cabin!

Our series moved outdoors again on June 17th with perfect weather-- clear skies, mid 80's, low humidity, and poetry that lived up to whatever expectations such weather might bring.

The reading, with Kyle Dargan (author of The Listening and Bouquet of Hungers) and David Keplinger (author of, most recently, The Prayers of Others), was an introduction to new poetic leaders in the Washington DC literary community. Both Kyle and David teach poetry at American University and are filling the void left by world class poet-professors Myra Sklarew and Henry Taylor. Kyle's poetry presented at the Cabin left an overall impression of political connectedness tempered by an emotional tenderness and musical sensibility. David's reading is best characterized by this line from his poem "Life on Earth," "You are breathing in what something beautiful and ancient has breathed out." A wonderful storyteller as well as reader, David expands the universe of possibilities and that's what he called on the attentive audience at Miller's Cabin to do!

Diane Lockward with Young Poets at Miller Cabin

On June 10, our series continued with Diane Lockward reading with the winners of the Jacklyn Potter Young Poets Prize: Will Frazier and Megan Hauptmann. This time the sky was clearly threatening and our reading site was the Sixth Presbyterian Church on 16th St. NW and Kennedy. Diane’s poems captivated us, with their ordinary subject matter and extraordinary images, with their playful and dangerous leaps. Her voice combined with the strong, dynamic voices of Will and Megan to make for a memorable evening of poetry. Add a few mice skittering across the stage and the flashing lightning…What an evening! What talent! Thanks to all who helped make this evening happen, including Perry Epes, who coordinated the Young Poets Prize, and Teri Cross Davis, who judged.

Please follow these links to purchase Diane Lockward’s books: Eve’s Red Dress and What Feeds Us. We’ll be on the lookout for work by Will and Megan in the years to come!

Links to Poets’ Books Here! Miller Cabin 2008 Off to a Fabulous Start

On June 3, the 33rd Joaquin Miller Cabin Poetry Reading Series opened with a reading featuring Barbara Crooker and Anne Higgins. With determined optimism, I set up the sound system under the trees by the cabin only to be disappointed by raindrops at 7:25. Quickly we moved to the picnic shelter where we were treated to poems by Barbara (with their brilliant ekphrasis) and Anne’s playful, rich images, including a moving and clever tribute to Emily Dickinson. Alas, our reception site was locked when we arrived later that evening, so please consider ordering the poets’ work using the links in this entry. Barbara has two full-length books, Radiance, which won the Word Press First Book Award and was a finalist for the Paterson Poetry Prize, and Line Dance, newly out.