Readings in Contemporary Poetry

Sylvia Gorelick and Cole Swensen

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 6:30 pm, Dia:Chelsea

Event Details
Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 6:30 pm

Dia:Chelsea
535 West 22nd Street, 5th Floor
New York City 

Readings in Contemporary Poetry curator, Vincent Katz provided an introduction for the evening's reading.

Free for Dia members; $10 general admission; $6 admission for students and seniors 

Advance ticket purchases recommended. Tickets are also available for purchase at the door, subject to availability.

Sylvia Mae Gorelick
Sylvia Mae Gorelick is a poet, writer, and translator based in New York City. Her chapbooks include Olympians, we are breathless (Poetry will be made by all!, 2014) and Seven Poems for Bill Berkson (Kostro Editions, 2009). Her work recently appeared in the anthologies In|Filtration: An Anthology of Innovative Writing from the Hudson River Valley (Station Hill, 2016) and For Bill, Anything: Images and Text for Bill Berkson (Pressed Wafer, 2015). The University of Chicago Press published her translation of Nietzsche’s Journey to Sorrento by Paolo D’Iorio in 2016, and her translation of Stéphane Mallarmé’s Le Livre is forthcoming from Exact Change Press.

POEM
Emerging somehow into power

you see the fog fall in and out of night
and women on the street

days go by in a vertigo
           of wills
and wanting some
          word to reach
          to reinvent what
          seeing means

once you wake to
war in your
           country and
           the games are
           all over

you want to
          shatter but
          shattering
          can’t be
                     had

                     life lines moving
                     through us
          we are only a few
                     hours into
                                         dark and
already time disappears through our
           hands — the truth
does not exist — it’s everybody’s angel

all the things that keep us from thinking

there’s a difference between the abstract body we love
           and the body suddenly precarious
                                 sheltered by danger
           there is nothing outside
                                           representation
                                but the trembling core and us inside it

Cole Swensen
Cole Swensen is the author of sixteen books of poetry, including the upcoming On Walking On (Nightboat Books, 2017). Swensen is the recipient of the Iowa Poetry Prize, the San Francisco State Poetry Center Book Award, and a National Poetry Series selection, among others. She has also been a finalist for the National Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Award. Also a translator, she has won the PEN USA Award in Literary Translation and has translated over fifteen volumes of contemporary French poetry into English. Swensen is also the coeditor of American Hybrid: A Norton Anthology of New Poetry (W. W. Norton & Company, 2009). She divides her time between Paris and Providence, where she teaches at Brown University. 

Debord
à la derive      de la Bièvre      de Guy Debord who could sweep through any city
on a curve    could river aloft          even an old river knotted        in the middle
of the night      can be traced by its heat               Debord who refused to follow
the meticulous scent    only a city could in such debt        could a city disarticulate

its flickering grid       in walking is      the destruction of city planning           the de-
Haussmannization of the mind on an October afternoon       filtered light         fingering                   
a break in the seal      cast aside       decades later     a group of young people
got into the habit of walking a straight line across Paris    no matter what buildings
rivers or other obstacles happened        to get in their way        they unlocked

the genetic sequence     and not without effect    on the English Inclosure Acts of
the 18th and 19th centuries    though this is difficult to document    which is one
of its principal strengths.