Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Writers' Congress

California sounds nice about now, because we're getting a lot of snow. I'm glad I'm in Chicago, though. There's a lot going on. Look out for the new anthology edited by Chris Green titled A Writers’ Congress: Chicago Poets on Barack Obama’s Inauguration with contributors including:

Christian Wiman, Josh Corey, Jan Bottiglieri, Brandi Homan, Larry Janowski, Tony Trigilio, David Trinidad, Arielle Greenberg, Richard Jones, James Shea, Elise Paschen, Rachel Webster, Francesco Levato, Alice George, Mary Hawley, Mike Puican, Cecilia Pinto, Eileen Favorite, cin salach, Anna Marie Craighead-Kintis, Liam Heneghan, Ralph Hamilton, Virginia Bell, Jackie White, Simone Muench, Haki Madhubut, Deborah Rosen, Helen Degan-Cohen, Charlie Newman, Allan Johnston, Garrett Brown, Maureen Flannery, Chicu Reddy, Suzanne Buffman, Susan Hahn, Reginald Gibbons, Calvin Forbes, Mary Kinzie, Judith Valente, Kevin Coval, Li-Young Lee, Julie Parsons Nesbitt, Dina Elenbogen, Quraysh Ali Lansana, Vicky Anderson, Ray Bianch, Bill Allegrezza, Ed Roberson, Kathleen Kirk, Maureen Seaton, Barry Silesky, Jeff Schiff, Susen James, Brenda Cardenas, Christina Pugh, Max Barry, Patty McMillen, Michael Watson, Stuart Dybek, John Keene, Marc Smith, Lauren Levato, Luis Alberto Urrea & Larry Sawyer.

Here's Yusef Komunyakaa's blurb for the book...

"This anthology of varied voices feels like a single praise song, in the spirit of a larger democratic project, with varying pitch and tone, and this nuance is accomplished without sacrificing the uniqueness of each poet. The reader actually encounters an element of the Barack Obama phenomenon; the philosophy of a shared experience at this poignant juncture in the life of America seems to focus the collection. At times, candid and truth-seeking, personal and public, entertaining and meditative, urban and suburban, imagistic and indebted to orality, these wonderful poems not only convey the complexity of Chitown, but they also unmask the nation's soul, without being nostalgic or overly whimsical. We all can embrace this Obama-inspired anthology of timely praise."