The Museum of American Poetics
American Poet Greats Lecture Series

2000 - 2001 Season

Jack Spicer
by Mark DuCharm
October 17, 2000
Jack Spicer   Mark DuCharm

Orpheus in the Echo Chamber: Jack Spicer's Poetics of Community" is the title of this talk by Mark DuCharme. While there are many entrances into the work of Jack Spicer (1925-1965), our focus here will be on community as a figure both for and in Spicer's poetics. DuCharme discusses the poet's difficult relationship with the very real scenes of Berkeley, North Beach and the "New American" landscape that emerged after the publication of Donald Allen's landmark anthology. Looking at current scholarship, he considers Spicer as a major U.S. American poet who worked beyond his own isolation and the "silence" of the act of writing, toward a poetics of the "Outside" still relevant to us in the new century.

Mark DuCharme is the author of several poetry chapbooks, most recently Near To and Desire Series. His poetry and essays on poetics have appeared widely in literary journals. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and of the Naropa University, where he has also taught. Since 1998 he has co-directed the Left Hand Reading Series. His first collection of poetry, Cosmopolitan Tremble, will be published in Summer, 2001 by Pavement Saw Press.

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Lorine Niedecker
by Mary Angeline
November 14, 2000
Lorine Niedecker   Mary Angeline

If the test of poetry, the order of all poetry, is to approach a state of music wherein the ideas present themselves sensuously and intelligently and are of no predatory intention, (Louis Zukofsky) then the poetry of Lorine Niedecker is indeed the foot that fits the slipper and in all probability it was her poetry which moved Zukofsky and others to this singular clarity of definition of the art of poetry. In our short hour we will read selections of Niedecker's work (handouts will be provided) and test our own mind and imagination along with one of our past centuries Great American Poets.

Mary Angeline, author of Precise Intrigues and recipient of a national poetry award and Gertrude Stein award for innovative poetry will give a talk on Niedecker's work and biography. Angeline is currently a visiting faculty member in the writing and poetics department at Naropa University. She has also taught literature and writing at Chatham College, Carnegie Mellon, and Brown University.

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Performance Poetry
by Justin Veach
January 16, 2001
Performance Poetry   Justin Veach

"Bed, Bath, and Beyond: Performance and It's Everyday Relevance"—an investigative lecture detailing the relevance of performance as a relatively new, emergent, and vital genre. With special attention paid to performance's roots in the visual and literary arts along with the role it plays in the deconstruction of identity and the challenges it poses to the conventional understanding of "difference".

Justin Veach is a Denver-based writer and performer. He has been accused of performing, presenting, and hosting poetry and performance wing-dings while playing a toy accordion at such famed Denver-Boulder venues as The Bug, Axis Mundi, the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and for the Naropa Summer Writing Program. Veach holds a BA in Writing & Poetics and Theater from Naropa University and is the Production Manager of the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art Theater.

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Digital Poetry
by Veronica Corpuz
February 20, 2001
Digital Poetry   Veronica Corpuz

"Digital Hybrids: How New Media Allow Us to (Re)Encounter Text & Image"

Hypertext options to "click" and to propel an audience onto a different screen—or one may say stage, surface or canvas—offer several ways to enact the text. This is no way privileges the screen above the page, obliterating the book in favor of the computer, but invites new possibilities for the poet. By tracing the beginnings of text as image to 20th century developments in concrete poetry, we may begin to see correlations between these past works and contemporary digital artists. In the digitized vistas of Jody Zellen, Loss Pequeno Glazier, and other online artists, the hybridization of genres and media is made manifest. They show us how the hyper-text-image pushes our conceptions of reading and interacting with the word, (re)encountering the text and image.

Veronica Corpuz received her BA with Honors in Creative Writing from Brown University where she completed her creative thesis which documented her parents' immigrant experience and explored the identity of Asian American women. A second-year student in Naropa University's MFA program, she currently edits Bombay Gin, the literary journal of The Jack Kerouac School and Tendrel, a magazine on diversity issues at Naropa. Veronica is the recipient of the Arstark Poetry Award from Brown and the Hiro Yamagata, Zora Neale Hurston and Honors Scholarships from Naropa.

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Ted Berrigan
by Anselm Hollo
March 13, 2001
Ted Berrigan   Anselm Hollo

"Time Flies By Like A Great Whale: Ted Berrigan and Friends"

Ted Berrigan (1934-1983) is one of the true uncrowned Poets Laureate of the United States. Teacher, talker, walker, friend and champion of younger writers, astute critic of the visual arts, Berrigan created a vortex of poetry on New York's Lower East Side that keeps radiating outward into the 21st century. He was a frequent visiting lecturer at Boulder's Naropa University, and his recorded talks and interviews (Talking in Tranquility, 1991, and On The Level Everyday, 1997) are brilliant informal "textbooks" for aspiring writers. Penguin Books reissued Berrigan's The Sonnets last year; his Selected Poems, published in 1994, is unfortunately —perhaps typically?—out of print.

Poet Anselm Hollo (longtime resident of Boulder and faculty member of The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics), proud to call himself a friend of Ted's, will be talking about him and his circle and reading from some of the work.

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4 .6
Patti Smith
by Kayanne Pickens-Solem
April 17, 2001
Patti Smith   Kayanne Pickens-Solem

Considered by many to be the mother of punk rock, Patti Smith fused hallucinatory imagery inspired by Arthur Rimbaud, Bob Dylan, and Keith Richards with early influences such as William Blake and Vladimir Mayakovski. She then went on to put these surreal visions to rock'n'roll music. This lecture will focus on her unique position in rock'n'roll poetics, with discussion of Smith's books: Seventh Heaven, Witt, Babel, and The Coral Sea, and recordings: Horses, Radio Ethiopia, Easter, and Wave.

Kayanne Pickens-Solem is a poet, performer, doll-artist, and teacher. Raised in Northern California's communal family, the Diggers, she was exposed early to the poetry of David Meltzer, Lenore Kandel, Lew Welch, and Diane di Prima. She studied with poets Leslie Simon and Stephanie Mines at San Francisco City College, and went on to perform alongside such poets as Jack Hirschman, Max Schwartz, Janice Blue and others in North Beach and Haight Ashbury coffeehouses. Her work has been anthologized in Pulse of the People, Garberville Anthology, Cost Coast, Ward Factor, and Grammatical Errors.

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