Friday, March 10, 2006

I *Heart* Prairie Schooner

Had a great time today reading for Prairie Schooner's 80th Anniversary. Wonderful and graceful intros by Hilda Raz and Kelly Grey Carlisle. Terrific readings by Janet Burroway, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Glenna Luschei, Lee Martin, (moi), and Peggy Schumaker. An attentive and enthusiastic audience. It doesn't get any better. And to top it off: a lovely dinner at the Finn & Porter. What a delight to talk with the editors and staff, and to have them be so welcoming to Dean. And to talk with the other writers: Janet Burroway and I had a fascinating conversation about E. M. Forester. Lee Marvin and I about Six Feet Under and the episode with the blow-up dolls being mistaken for the Second Coming. Glena Luschei about medieval Spanish nuns and poetry. I feel so honored that PS asked me to join them for their anniversary. Here's to 80 more years.

It has been quite a gas to be at AWP again. I bought a shitload of books. I got to meet up (albeit briefly) with a slew of bloggers, some for the first time, others for a second or third time, including (I hope I'm not forgeting anybody): Charles Jensen (and his posse), Eduardo Corral (and Rigo), C Dale Y, Reb Livingston, Tony Robinson, Jeannine Hall Gailey, Deborah Ager (plus hubby and Olive), Neil Aitken, Jonathan Mayhew (as audience at a fantastic Kenneth Koch conference, only); but I never met Lorna or Aimee Nez. Darn.

Also met a few people who "know me" from reading my blog, and came up and introduced themselves. One of them asking me, "Now, what is Rebecca Loudon really like!" And saw other poet friends and acquaintances such as Ingrid Wendt, Kim Addonizio, Kevin Craft, Madeliene DeFrees, Chase Twichell, Jared Leising . . . etc.

I also met several doctor-poets and nurse-poets from around the country. What is it about medicine and poetry? Perhaps the Greeks knew something when they envisioned the same muse for both of them.

Anyway . . . time for sleep. An early flight home in the AM.

Good night and good luck.


Justin Evans said...

In the summer of 2002, I attended the final Cedar Breaks Writer Workshop, where Peggy Shumaker was one of the faculty. She is just a lovely poet and wonderful person.

32poems said...

i loved your reading! I could not stick around to say hi as I had to get back to the bean -- being the food source and all -- and I hope you'll send me a copy of that anagram poem. senators treason atoners -- wow!

Peter said...

Thank you, Deborah. *blush*

Peter said...

PS: the anagrammer poem is in the next book. It first appeared in Poetry; but you can also see it online here:

(glad you liked it)