Wednesday, February 08, 2006

It seems to me...

it seems to me that Chicago has entered a moribund time kind of quiet.. I am going to be putting up tomorrow on a new reading series with the guild complex and notre dame on latin american writing many of the readers are just ok but it is the principal of the thing it is important.

Chicago does a bad job on the ethnic front. Just think last year was the year of Gombrowitz in the world and yet in Chicago the second city of Poland we had not events that was a travesty. i would like to see a reading series here or a magazine that creates a dialogue between international poets and local chicago ones. it seems that so much of this is filtered through new york or universities this could be interesting.


At 8:37 AM, Blogger Kerri said...

I agree that we need more world literatures represented in the literary activity of our city. As I'm sure most poets coming in from international outposts would require more than my couch and beer money as payment, it seems like the onus is on universities, poetry centers, and consulates to take the lead. How do we influence these organizations with the means?

At 9:27 AM, Blogger Dave said...

I wouldn't call this a "moribund" time in Chicago, not at all. In fact, there's so much happening that people have to be choosy about which events they're going to attend. I wouldn't call an autumn where I was able to attend readings by the Waldrops and Susan Howe, or a winter where I'll be able to hear Raworth, Mackey, Hillman, the Links Hall events, and many others, "moribund."

The issue of bringing international writers is going to be a difficult one to confront, though. I think that there is money to be had for events like this, but it would take a level of collaboration between groups that hasn't occurred very frequently. I don't think the onus is on the universities themselves; I think if someone wanted to start a program like this, it would require patience and a willingness to talk openly with the many colleges, universities, and foundations in town.

Are independent projects willing to interact with them? To wit: the Poetry Foundation, for all its Evans-ascribed conspiracies, has quite a lot of money these days. The Poetry Center is also alive.

What about various museums and ethic organizations, like the Mexican Fine Arts Center or the Polish Museum of America? Which groups would we consider?

At 11:09 AM, Blogger Kerri said...

I agree with Dave that there's plenty of quality lit action to crow about, and in spite of a little "restructuring," I still think Chicago's poetry scene is on the up and up.

Our community is relatively small for the abundance of good readings that come around, so maybe it's not realistic to expect perfect attendance from all kin at every event. Plus, none of us have the leisure time of student days, or the draw of extra credit...

Certainly one could hope for (and actively incite) more visibility for things, and collaboration among pipsqueak organizations and those on a Lilly/whathaveyou dole can top the to-do list of many.

By the way, save the second weekend of April y'all. The French Consulate is programming some excellent events with contemporary French poets and their English translators. Discrete is to be partnering with Guild Complex and FC to present an evening of this Monday the 10th. I'll post more details on this soon, but I mention it here in the "it's possible, let's do it some more" category.

At 4:00 PM, Blogger Kerri said...

I saw a mention online that there's some Kyrgyz poetry coming to town March 24-28. I don't know where. Sounds like one of the universities. The program's called "1000 Years on the Silk Road: Epic Poetry from the Kyrgyz Republic."


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