Tomas Tranströmer reads widely from his work; he also reads two poems by fellow Swedish poet Harry Martinson. Of note, Martinson received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1974, the year before this reading. Thirty-six years later, in 2011, Tranströmer himself was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The reading includes the performance of two poems in Swedish, and ends with a rich and extensive question and answer session.
In his first appearance at the Poetry Center, Tomas Tranströmer reads widely from his work as translated by May Swenson, Robert Bly, and Samuel Charters. Given primarily in English, the reading opens with a bilingual performance of "Spår" <"Tracks"> in Swedish and English.
In this performance, Jimmy Santiago Baca reads from Black Mesa Poems, a collection published the year after this reading took place. He also performs poems from Martín & Meditations on the South Valley, a book that was awarded the Before Columbus American Book Award and earned Jimmy Santiago Baca an NEA grant for the year of this reading.
Bei Dao reads from Old Snow (1991), Forms of Distance (1993), Landscape Over Zero (1996) and Unlock (2000). Dennis Evans reads the English translations.
Juan Felipe Herrera performs his poetry and speaks movingly about song, language, and family in a reading given alongside Sherwin Bitsui for the 2009 Tucson Festival of Books. Herrera's Half of the World in Light: New and Selected Poems, published by the University of Arizona Press, was announced as the winner of the 2008 National Book Critics Circle Award just two days prior to this reading.
As part of the Tucson Festival of Books, Jimmy Santiago Baca performs excerpts from his collection of poems Healing Earthquakes.
Christopher Burawa reads from The Small Mystery of Lapses (2006). He also reads uncollected and unpublished poems, including translations of poems by Icelandic poet Jóhann Hjálmarsson. This reading was originally given alongside Ofelia Zepeda for the inaugural Tucson Festival of Books.
In this dual-language performance, Francisco X. Alarcón reads from Snake Poems: An Aztec Invocation (1992) and Of Dark Love (1992). He also reads work and shares illustrations from five of his books of poetry for children. The poems in many of these books are presented in both Spanish and English. The reading closes with a selection of poems from an unpublished manuscript titled Life Song.
Ofelia Zepeda reads from Where Clouds Are Formed (2008). This reading was originally given with Christopher Burawa.
Yehuda Amichai reads widely from his extensive body of work, reading some poems in both English and Hebrew. Several translations (including translations of poem titles) performed here differ from the translations collected in his books.
Luci Tapahonso reads from A Radiant Curve (2008). This reading was originally given with Alison Hawthorne Deming.
Iraqi poet Sinan Antoon reads from his collection Baghdad Blues and uncollected translations of many more poems. He concludes the reading with a performance of a poem in Arabic.
At this tribute to Gustaf Sobin, a US-born poet who lived and wrote in Provence for more than 40 years, Sobin's translator Tedi López Mills reads one of Sobin's longer poems in English as well as her translation of the poem into Spanish. She is introduced by Jeffrey Miller.
Mexican poet Tedi López Mills reads from her work in Spanish at the 2010 Tucson Festival of Books, accompanied by her translator, Wendy Burk, who reads the poems in English. The reading includes work from an unpublished bilingual manuscript of López Mills's selected poems.
This reading begins with Olga Broumas reading her translations of the Greek poet Odysseas Elytis. Sometimes performing poems in Greek and sometimes performing in English, Broumas experiments with the delivery of each translation and reads one poem by moving between Greek and English as she reads. Broumas also reads from five of her own books: Beginning With O, Pastoral Jazz, Soie Sauvage, Caritas, and Perpetua.
Mexican poet Homero Aridjis reads work reflecting his environmental activism and engagement with Mexican history, drawn from his 2001 bilingual publication Ojos de otro mirar / Eyes to See Otherwise: Selected Poems. The English translations of Aridjis's poems (by Eliot Weinberger, George McWhirter, and Betty Ferber) are read aloud by Alison Hawthorne Deming.
Sherwin Bitsui reads from his work in English and Navajo as part of a multilingual poetry reading also featuring Alberto Rios (reading in English and Spanish) and Ofelia Zepeda (reading in English and O'odham). The reading includes selections from Water, an artist book created by Karla Elling to commemorate the Poetry Center's 50th anniversary. "Water" features a chainlink of poetry composed and translated by Bitsui, Rios, Zepeda, and Zapotec poet Natalia Toledo.
Ofelia Zepeda reads from her work in English and O'odham as part of a multilingual poetry reading also featuring Alberto Rios (reading in English and Spanish) and Sherwin Bitsui (reading in English and Navajo). The reading includes selections from Water, an artist book created by Karla Elling to commemorate the Poetry Center's 50th anniversary. "Water" features a chainlink of poetry composed and translated by Bitsui, Rios, Zepeda, and Zapotec poet Natalia Toledo.
Alberto Ríos reads from his work in English and Spanish as part of a multilingual poetry reading also featuring Ofelia Zepeda (reading in English and O'odham) and Sherwin Bitsui (reading in English and Navajo). The reading includes selections from Water, an artist book created by Karla Elling to commemorate the Poetry Center's 50th anniversary. Water features a chainlink of poetry composed and translated by Bitsui, Ríos, Zepeda, and Zapotec poet Natalia Toledo.
Poet and sculptor Nora Naranjo Morse, of Santa Clara Pueblo, reads from Mud Woman: Poems from the Clay (1992), including an expanded sung and spoken version of "Gia's Song."
Pat Mora reads from her first two books of poems, Chants (1984) and Borders (1986), as well as poems that would later be published, sometimes in different versions, in Communion (1991) and Agua Santa (1997). Mora, who hails from El Paso, includes several poems about the desert in honor of what she describes as "probably the first time I have done a reading in another desert area."
Laura Tohe reads from Tséyi': Deep in the Rock; Reflections on Canyon de Chelly (2005), which pairs Tohe's texts with images by photographer Stephen E. Strom. Following Tohe's reading, Strom discusses the images contained in the book.
Franz Wright discusses a wide range of topics, including Rilke, translation, and the writing life.
Natalie Diaz reads at a symposium hosted by Feminist Formations, an interdisciplinary journal of women's, gender, and sexuality studies. This performance includes poems from When My Brother Was an Aztec (2012); Diaz also reads several poems that are forthcoming in Feminist Formations. This reading was originally given with Niki Herd.
Gloria E. Anzaldúa reads widely from her extensive body of work; this reading includes uncollected and unpublished poems.
Pat Mora reads from Agua Santa / Holy Water (1995), Borders (1986), and Chants (1984). She also reads an excerpt from a manuscript that would later be published as House of Houses (1997).
Miroslav Holub reads widely from his extensive body of work, reading some poems in both English and Czech.
Tomas Tranströmer reads translations of poems that first appeared in For the Living and the Dead (För levande och döda, 1989). Some poems are performed in Swedish and English. In the question and answer session that follows the reading, Tranströmer discusses the collaborative nature of the translation process.
Jimmy Santiago Baca reads poems and prose from his body of work, including A Glass of Water (2009), A Place to Stand (2002), Healing Earthquakes (2001), Martín & Meditations on the South Valley (1987), and C-Train (Dream Boy's Story) and Thirteen Mexicans: Poems (2002).
Special guest Logan Phillips performs his poetry for the Southern Arizona Poetry Out Loud Regional Finals Competition.
Diana García reads from her collection When Living Was a Labor Camp (2000).
Denise Chávez reads from her novel Loving Pedro Infante (2001). This reading was originally given with Loida Maritza Pérez.
Natalie Diaz reads poems from When My Brother Was an Aztec (2012) as well as new and uncollected work. This reading was originally given with Eduardo C. Corral to inaugurate the Morgan Lucas Schuldt Memorial Reading Series.
Poet-translators Pura López-Colomé and Forrest Gander give bilingual performances of poems from Science and Steepleflower (1998) and No Shelter: The Selected Poems of Pura López-Colomé (2002).
Tedi López Mills reads poems from While Light Is Built (2004) with translations read by Wendy Burk.
Semezdin Mehmedinović reads poems from Sarajevo Blues (1998) and Nine Alexandrias (2003).
Martín Espada reads from Trumpets from the Islands of their Eviction (1987), Rebellion is the Circle of a Lover's Hands (1990), and City of Coughing and Dead Radiators (1993).
Claribel Alegría reads poems and prose from Luisa in Realityland (1987), Woman of the River (1989), Fugues (1993), and Thresholds / Umbrales (1996).
Rosario Ferré reads from her poetry and fiction, frequently alternating between English and Spanish.
Rolando Hinojosa reads widely from his work in English and Spanish.
Ofelia Zepeda reads from Ocean Power (1995) and Where Clouds Are Formed (2008); she also reads several new poems. Some poems are performed in Tohono O'odham and English.
Tomaž Šalamun reads from poems written throughout his career, some of them translated into English by poets such as Bob Perelman and Charles Simic, others read in his native Slovenian.
Richard and Nora Marks Dauenhauer read from their English translations of Tlingit poems and stories, providing fascinating explanations of the traditions behind the literature. They read first the original Tlingit and then the English translations. They conclude by reading from their own original poems.
Ofelia Zepeda reads from her poems in O'odham and in English. She also reads from an unfinished translation of a story originally told by an O'odham medicine man.
Ofelia Zepeda reads from her poetry collections When It Rains, Papago and Pima Poetry = Mat hekid o ju, 'O'odham Na-cegitodag (1982), Ocean Power: Poems from the Desert (1995), and Jewed 'I-hoi, Earth Movements (1997). She reads the poems first in O'odham, and then in English.
Juan Felipe Herrera warmly engages the audience with work that would be collected in books such as Mayan Drifter: Chicano Poet in the Lowlands of America (1997), Notebooks of a Chile Verde Smuggler (2002), and Half of the World in Light: New and Selected Poems (2008), as well as uncollected pieces. Standout performances include "Notes on Other Chicana and Chicano Inventions" and "Suicide in Hollywood / Lupe Velez (Circ. 1923) Serigrafía de una actriz Mexicana," read in Spanish and English. Opening his reading with an invocation to sky, earth, wind, and fire, Herrera encourages audience laughter and participation throughout the evening.
Ofelia Zepeda welcomes the audience to the 2017 Thinking Its Presence conference. She reads poems from Ocean Power (1995) and Where Clouds Are Formed (2008), along with several more recent poems.