HOAGLAND, YOUNG, TRETHEWEY & DUNN: The last two evenings have been spent at poetry readings. On Wednesday, it was the 60th anniversary reading for The Georgia Review at the Margaret Mitchell House. Natasha Trethewey and Stephen Dunn were the features. Last night, Tony Hoagland and Dean Young featured at the Poetry at Tech series. Talk about wildly different evenings.

Dunn read from his books and threw in a dirty joke for laughs. Natasha read exlusively from Native Guard, which won her the Pulitzer earlier this year. She sounded great and I always admire her for being able to get through those emotional poems about her mother's murder without breaking down. I don't think I could do it.

Hoagland and Young -- who are good friends -- made quite a duo. They both decided to try new work, some of it totally raw and messy. Hoagland read a funny poem about Britney Spears and had trouble deciphering his own handwriting. Young's reading was mostly poems he had written several weeks ago during a challenge to write 15 line poems. They were abstract, maybe not as fully formed as they will eventually become, but it was a treat to hear all this fresh, unfiltered work. Favorite line of the night was from Young: "Driving anywhere with Tony is an adventure. He drives like he's in a cartoon."

Atlanta poet Dustin Brookshire is raising money for the AIDS Walk by auctioning off autographed books of poetry. He has books signed by Denise Duhamel, Laure-Anne Bosselaar, Alan Shapiro, Cecilia Woloch, Kurt Brown, Kate Evans and one of the last copies of my own Slow To Burn. Visit his blog to find out more and help him raise money for this worthy cause.

Tonight is the CRUX anthology release reading/signing party. I'll have an update over the weekend.


Anonymous said…
I saw your name in the ad GT placed in APR - so fancy! What I wonder is this: why do Dean and Hoagland seem to strive to publish the most insane-looking author photos?

Glad you had a good time!
Collin Kelley said…
You are the third or fourth person who told me about the Poetry at Tech ad in APR. I let me subscription run out -- I know, I know, bad poet. They sent me over the glossy print ups of the ad and apparently there is a big poster, too. I need to get one for my archives.

Tony is pretty eccentric, so not surprised by his author photo one bit. It suits him perfectly. lol
Rupert said…
yes, i loved Tony H. - he got totally *down* re whitey's response to hip-hop - and the Brittany piece was amazing in that the mtv thing was barely a month ago - plus he nailed the "larger" aspects of the whole media circus - Young's reading was a conundrum for me - I mean, it was good, but he seemed to keep feeling he had to say he was "dying up here" and "embarrassed" - presumably because he was getting no laughs? But wtf - his work is not geared to "laughs" - surely he must know that, and surely he must have known what it's like to read after Hoagland . . . who used a Young quote as an epigram for Donkey Gospel - what better praise is there than that?
Collin Kelley said…
Young does seem very self-effacing, but maybe that's part of his shtick.
Thanks for the shout out.
Justin Evans said…
Those names together make them sound like a law firm.
Collin Kelley said…
^I like the rhythm.
Unknown said…
Sounds like a cool reading!

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