Content Tagged ‘Camille T. Dungy’

Join Ecotone Contributors at Split This Rock Poetry Festival this weekend!

Ecotone heads to DC this weekend for the 2018 Split This Rock Poetry Festival! Check out our contributors presenting and reading! Will we see you there? Find us at the Social Change Book Fair on Saturday.

Thursday, April 19

Ghost Fishing Book Launch (Reading & Discussion)
Presenters: Melissa A. Tuckey and readers Hayes Davis, Camille T. Dungy, Everett Hoagland, Tiffany Higgins, Elizabeth Jacobson, Nancy K. Pearson, Gretchen Primack, Katy Richey, Purvi Shah, Danez Smith, Javier Zamora
1:30 – 3 p.m. | National Housing Center Auditorium

Many good things come out of Split This Rock Festival interactions and panel discussions—we’re proud to celebrate the birth of one! Ghost Fishing: An Eco-Justice Poetry Anthology was conceived as a result of a panel Split This Rock Co-Founder Melissa Tuckey hosted on June Jordan and environmental justice poetry back in 2012. Many, many months later, this groundbreaking book is at last in print! Pushing back against colonizing ideas of nature as unpeopled wilderness, Ghost Fishing presents a rich terrain of culturally diverse perspectives on issues of environmental crisis and resistance. Grounded in social justice and the belief that all beings have the right to a healthy, safe environment and home, this culturally diverse collection engages with many of the most pressing issues of our time, while also offering hope around our shared future. Come celebrate this necessary and inspiring book and help us think about how to get it out in communities. Bring a copy and get it signed by poets and the editor!

No More Masks! 45 Years of Women in Poetry (Panel)
Presenters: Elizabeth Acevedo, Ellen Bass, Sarah Browning, Solmaz Sharif
3:30 – 5 p.m. | Charles Sumner School Museum & Archives Room 102

In 1973, Ellen Bass co-edited, with Florence Howe, the first major anthology of women’s poetry, No More Masks!. Howe began her introduction, “This is not the last word on women poets. Indeed, in some respects it is more like the first word, since so little has been written about them as a group.” How far we’ve come! But in the moment of #MeToo and our often still-paltry representation in the ranks of publishing, how far we still have to go! Join a mutigenerational discussion as we honor our history and those who’ve gone before, celebrate successes, and rededicate ourselves to knocking down doors and building inclusive spaces that welcome all our many, varied, and glorious voices.

The Poet as Parent: Inoculating For and Against the World (Reading)
Presenters: Mario Chard, Camille T. Dungy, Erika Meitner, David Thacker
3:30 – 5 p.m. | Charles Sumner School Museum & Archives Memorial Hall

Does the poet-as-parent sometimes feel the joy and pain of a nation in turmoil more acutely than those without children? Whether that’s true, or even worth our time to debate in light of such great need, what is true is that some poets have children and some choose to speak to those children about the world through their poems. This themed reading explores the ways in which a diverse panel of contemporary poets speak to their children in their work. In a metaphor for vaccination–when a parent takes an infant to a clinic to receive a weakened virus in order to build immunity against it– we sometimes use the word “inoculate,” meaning to graft an “eye” (oculus) of one plant into another. Here “eye” stands in for “bud,” the new leaf forming, and thus, through the act of inoculation, we figuratively “give sight” to our children. We graft in the new eye. These poems are the new eye. This is the world we teach them to see.

Featured Reading & Book Signing
Camille T. Dungy, Sharon Olds, Javier Zamora, 2018 Sonia Sanchez-Langston Hughes Poetry Contest Winner Jonathan Mendoza

7 – 8:30 p.m. | National Housing Center Auditorium |
ASL interpretation provided. Reading followed by a book signing. Books will be available for sale by Split This Rock partner Busboys & Poets Books. Free & Open to the public.

Friday, April 20

No F*cks to Give: Women Poets and Dark Humor (Reading)
Presenters: Lillian-Yvonne Bertram, Kendra DeColo, Erika Meitner, Shara McCallum, Tyler Mills
11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. | American Association of University Women Room 1

Comedy has historically been a tool for social change, used to influence those in power and subvert the status quo. But how can humor be used to resist a regime whose leader is described as “satire-proof”? What powers and responsibilities do poetry and stand-up carry in times of political turmoil and repression? What does it mean to have an attitude of “No F*cks” while fighting forces that seek to keep us hopeless and inert? In this lively panel, five women poets will read from work that sits at the intersection of satire, performance, and social critique and that seeks to reclaim and disrupt dehumanizing rhetoric through an unapologetic, fierce poetics. They will discuss the influence of comedy on their craft, specifically the ways humor can upend and challenge systems of oppression. We hope this reading will generate robust discussion and audience participation on creating work that claims our humanity while exposing the absurd ineptitude and cowardly violence of the current regime.

Tools from the Editor’s Desk: A Revision-based Workshop for Poets and Poet-Editors (Workshop)
Presenters: Anna Lena Phillips Bell and Sumita Chakraborty
11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. | American Association of University Women Room 2

Editing is an act of love—an effort to help writers find their work’s best form and to help readers discover that work. Two editors who work with poets for publication in national literary magazines will offer writers fresh strategies for revising their own work and for offering practical feedback on others’ work. With both existing examples and poems written during the workshop, we’ll practice using tools from the craft of editing, including the art of querying as well as considerations of syntax, rhetoric, grammar, usage, and more. We’ll explore strategies for providing feedback without furthering oppression around class, race, gender, place of origin, and sexuality. We’ll discuss ways to engage compassionately, openly, and truthfully with both our own identities and those of the writers we work with. We’ll consider the peculiar benefits and challenges of being a poet-editor, as well as ways to get started as an editor for those who wish to explore the field. Writers will leave the workshop with a packet of revision prompts and resources for editing.

Sweet, Fraught South: Readings and Incitements to Write from Place (Reading)
Presenters: Anna Lena Phillips Bell, Sumita Chakraborty, Ashley M. Jones
3:30 – 5:30 p.m. | Charles Sumner School Museum & Archives Room 102

Writing that emerges from place can reveal not only the effects of oppression but also the radical joy that can come from attempts to know a landscape well and live in right relation to it. The poets featured in this workshop and reading use diverse formal strategies to write from the Southern places they know, love, and struggle with. They explore ecological vibrancy and decline, historical erasure and resurrection, regional speech and song, gender, and the intersections between environmental and social justice. Each will read from recent work and then offer a prompt designed to inspire writing from place and aid poetic practice. A minibook containing the prompts will be offered to those in attendance, and the session will include time for conversation among readers and audience members about place-based practice.

 Saturday, April 21

2018 Split This Rock Social Change Book Fair
10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. | National Housing Center

Featuring the critically important work of socially engaged poets, writers, organizations, progressive presses, literary magazines, and independent newspapers. Free and open to the public.

Featured Reading & Book Signing
Kazim Ali,
Ellen Bass, Terisa Siagatonu
4:15 – 5:45 p.m. | National Housing Center Auditorium

ASL interpretation provided. Reading followed by a book signing. Books will be available for sale by Split This Rock partner Busboys & Poets Books. Free and open to the public.

Save Your Place: Dead Things Imposed

Ecotone’s tagline is “reimagining place,” and we love work that brings us to a specific location, real or imagined. In this department, Save Your Place, we highlight our favorite descriptions of place from work we’ve published at Ecotone and Lookout.

This place is from Camille T. Dungy’s essay, “Differentiation” in Ecotone 18.

“Most of what we saw was human-built and imposed—buildings made from shipping containers or frame structures stilted above the permafrost, which, in this part of Alaska, can be as much as a half-mile deep. Or, like the baleen palms or the jawbone arches, dead things imposed on the landscape. Most of what we saw was desolate, lifeless, and frozen. In spite of this, standing by the bone arch with our feet near the icy Arctic Ocean, we marveled aloud at how beautiful everything was.”

Making a List: An Ecotone-Style Holiday Feast

Ecotone18_Cover-325x487It is holiday feast season so I thought I would rummage through Ecotone’s Sustenance Issue to get some ideas for avoiding that same dried-out poultry and canned cranberry sauce. The bounty therein was plentiful, and I couldn’t stop with the traditional five-item list. So give your Aunt Henrietta an extra glass of white zinfandel and let your tastebuds celebrate alongside you in this collection of fantastic recipes.

Appetizer:

  1. Reading Camille T. Dungy’s essay “Differentiation” I found myself wandering the snowy planes of an Alaskan town discovering a food culture I had no knowledge of. Since I am not in the habit of catching and processing my seafood by hand, I decided on the next-best thing: to start our feast with a salmon fish cake courtesy of BBCGoodFood.com. I’m not suggesting that you go crazy and make your own mayonnaise tarter sauce but I am alsohttp://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/braised-mustard-greens-recipe not not suggesting that.

Main Course:

  1. It is a challenge to read Randall Kenan’s essay “Greens: A Mess of Memories About Taste” and not imagine the tangy savory flavor of mustard greens filling you up and making you feel at home. You don’t have to be a Southerner to appreciate the mastery of imagery and sensuous textures Kenan weaves into his essay. Being a firm believer in the power of bacon to make anything better, I found a recipe, courtesy of Rachel Ray, that combined the two. If Aunt Henrietta is huffing and puffing about not having those mashed potatoes, just give her a taste of these greens and ask her, “Ain’t it good? Ain’t it good?”
  1. I am particularly excited about this next one. Sarah Becan’s comic “Les Curds du Mal” is both savory and enraging. After spending time learning about the politics of importing French cheese, you’ll want to jet off to Paris directly for a bit of Brie. Although we now know that our imported cheese is subpar, we’ll take what we can get and, after finding this recipe, courtesy of Saveur, we want it. And this recipe for a Tartiflette might make it taste even better.
  1. Many of us here at Ecotone and Lookout have holiday histories that are steeped in tradition. But after reading “Breaking the Jemima Code: The Legacy of African American Cookbooks,” an excerpt from the book The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cooks, we’ve learned that many of our tried-and-true traditions have origins we’re unaware of. In the spirit of acknowledging that Toni Tipton-Martin gives us, let’s get rid of that salty swine and savor something new. I’m sure by this point Aunt Henrietta is on board and ready for whatever the table delivers—just make sure no one starts talking politics! Here’s a recipe for Herb Roasted Leg of Lamb offered up by Toni Tipton-Martin herself via the JemimaCode.com

Dessert:

  1. The Sustenance Issue of Ecotone is a trip not only through physical sustenance, but also the emotional and historical kind. Here at Ecotone we celebrate the knowledge and healing the comes through the sharing of stories. This next recipe is inspired by Matthew Gavin Frank’s essay “Spoon Bread.” Frank’s candid examination of his own family and cultural history in Nebraska is awe inspiring. And mouth watering. This recipe for spoon bread is courtesy of Martha Stewart.
  1. Emily Hillard’s essay “Heavenly Work: The Fleeting Legacy of the Shakers” asks us to imagine how a community interacts with its history. I couldn’t imagine a sweeter way to end a foray into new traditions. So, we perused Emily’s blog, Nothing in The House, and found a recipe for Red Wine-Poached Seckel Pear Tarlets that will have Aunt Henrietta dreaming about next year (and after all that white zinfindel we doubt she’ll turn down anything poached in red wine). If this particular tartlet is not your style, check out Emily’s blog for a plethora of options.

From all of us here at Ecotone and Lookout, we wish you a season filled with good sustenance of all kinds: good friends, fiesty family (wink wink, Aunt Henrietta), tasty food, and robust literature.

–Reneé LaBonté, Lookout intern