19 May 17, 9 pm
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Ishion Hutchinson: Trouble on the Road Again
“A thing survives us. It becomes an heirloom. Our DNA crosses and blurs on an object and makes a bizarre genealogy without names or faces. These we handle with care, even a vigilant hope that it—this thing or object (one a tobacco pipe, the other a jewelry box)—will speak. But the language of a thing is silence. It’s conjunction absence. We can only feel with great pain, stroking each object in a house, momentarily, this thing or another quiver with what will outlast memory and the breath’s annihilation. Words are things, presences: “No idea but in things.” That is what dictates the differences in accord with how one person dissolves differently from another, to rise (like tobacco smoke, glistening like black opal) an ancestor.”—Ishion Hutchinson
Ishion Hutchinson is the author of two poetry collections, Far District and House of Lords and Commons. He is the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, the Whiting Award, the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award and the Larry Levis Prize from the Academy of American Poets, among others. He teaches in the graduate writing program at Cornell University and is a contributing editor to the literary journals The Common and Tongue: A Journal of Writing & Art.