A Necessary Darkness: Barbara Guest and The Open Chamber

Wednesday, April 24, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Fromm Hall - FR 125 - Maraschi Room

A Necessary Darkness: Barbara Guest & The Open Chamber

This a lecture in appreciation of the poet Barbara Guest and her late masterpiece, Forces of Imagination: Writing on Writing (2003). The essays and lectures in this book often sound like testimony from a witness who has just returned from a transformative (and still flickering) landscape. The tone of nobility that speaks through her text can be traced back to an earlier time when the most modern statements on poetry could be found in the correspondence of John Keats and Arthur Rimbaud. We will also look closely at a few of Guests’ poems from the same general period including An Emphasis Falls on Reality and Defensive Rapture, those classics that hinge upon an absolute interdependence between fragments, whose ultimate release and agency seems to border upon astral projection.

Cedar Sigo was raised on the Suquamish Reservation in the Pacific Northwest and studied at The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at the Naropa Institute. He is the editor of There You Are: Interviews, Journals, and Ephemera, on Joanne Kyger (forthcoming from Wave Books, 2017), and author of eight books and pamphlets of poetry, including Royals (Wave Books, 2017), Language Arts (Wave Books, 2014), Stranger in Town (City Lights, 2010), Expensive Magic (House Press, 2008), and two editions of Selected Writings (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2003 and 2005). He has taught workshops at St. Mary’s College, Naropa University, and University Press Books.