Myung Mi Kim: Whenever We Feel Like It Reading, 2010

Posted 4/2/2010 (link)

We're closing out the week with a wonderful recent reading by Myung Mi Kim at the Kelly Writers House as part of the Whenever We Feel Like It series. The series is co-organized by Emily Pettit and Michelle Taransky (KWH's Assistant to the Director), members of the Committee of Vigilance, which is a subdivision of Sleepy Lemur Quality Enterprizes, which, of course, is the production division of The Meeteetzee Institute. Recorded March 1st, Kim's appearance was co-sponsored by UPenn Asian American Studies, SASGov and the Talk Poets.

"Myung Mi Kim's writings, collaborations and teaching form a dynamic practice where poetry is always taking place," Taransky observes in her introduction. "Kim's poems are convolutions, precisions, wilds — places for which no punctuation exists, where broken communication is the people's communication. This is a poetics of the fugitive, the unnameable, the contingent . . . nor remnant, nor garment, nor refuse, neither infinite deferral nor rehearsal of uncertainty. This is where to locate the labor of making, where the practices of the poem is the practice of radical materiality."

Reading largely from her latest collection, Penury (Omnidawn, 2009), as well as Commons (University of California, 2002), Kim threaded her selections together in search of the "radiating [and] connective concerns [that] keep resurfacing and refunctioning themselves" in her work, and in an aside to the audience, she notes that beginning with her 1999 Sun and Moon book, Dura, "I do feel as if I'm writing one work, and so while these are books that are autonomous and have a kind of duration and a feel and a shape [. . .] really I've been working a similar kind of ground, thinking about related things for a very long time now." The reading is followed by a lively question-and-answer session, which includes a fascinating exchange between Kim and Bob Perelman.

Don't forget to visit PennSound's Whenever We Feel Like It homepage, where you'll find audio and video from four other events in the series, including sets by Andrew Zawacki, Dara Wier, Ben Kopel and Natalie Lyalin.

PoemTalk 30: Grenier's Favorite Williams

Posted 4/4/2010 (link)

Our spring semester apprentice, Jeff Boruszak, returns with another PennSound Daily write-up, this time focusing on the latest PoemTalk program:

In case you haven't yet subscribed to the PoemTalk Podcast Series, you'll be pleased to know that last week saw the release of the program's 30th episode. Host Al Filreis was joined by first-time guest Robert Grenier, as well as returning panelists, Bob Perelman and PennSound co-director Charles Bernstein. On the slate were two poems by William Carlos Williams, chosen by Grenier for the occasion: "The Red Wheelbarrow" and "Flowers by the Sea," both of which were commonly read by Williams.

Grenier, who wrote a senior honors thesis at Harvard entitled "Organic Prosody in the Poetry of William Carlos Williams" shortly after the poet's death, began the program by explaining why he specifically chose these two poems. Describing it as an act of remembering, not only of the content of the poem, he says that, "the poem is remembering me in a way, it's putting me back together in the quiet time of my existence, insofar as I am alive, and it's a moving thing, it should be the place where those words return."

Al Filreis then moves on to Bernstein and Perelman, asking them to discuss the connection between Grenier and Williams. Perelman, who was a student of Grenier's at UC Berkeley, recalls his past lessons on these poems, mentioning the "Emersonian moralism" of "The Red Wheelbarrow," and the "chickens" in the final line — which, as he explains, is about "words and about patterning of words, so I think that's very Grenier-esque." Bernstein discusses the "specific autonomy" of the lines of both poems, relating the works to that of poet Larry Eigner.

Grenier then expresses his preference for the second version of "Flowers by the Sea," from a 1954 recording in Williams' home following his second stroke, explaining that in this recording, the poet's "intonation is a peculiar sort of snotty, nasal, schoolmarm-ish quality, and it articulates what's said." When Filreis brings up the circular metaphor of the poem, whereby the sea is flower-like and the flower is sea-like, Grenier continues his thoughts on the sound of the poem, saying that, "it's the sound — all this restless, perhaps circled peacefully sound, is mesmerizing in its capacity to conjure this kind of spacey place by the ocean where these things exist."

The conversation then circles back to "Wheelbarrow," focusing on some of Williams' statements about the poem, including that the object of the red wheelbarrow is a "thing of beauty," and that the first line is a rewriting of Keats' "Endymion." Grenier mentions the conjuring power of the "chickens" in the final line, before a brief discussion of the poems' line breaks rises to the forefront. Afterwards, the discussion shifts to the social context of the poem, as Bernstein turns the moderating tables on Filreis, asking him to discuss Max Eastman, who once called "Flowers by the Sea" the "only real poem" that Williams wrote. Eastman, who was a part of the anti-communist/anti-modernist movement of the 50's, stands in contrast to Williams' admission that "Wheelbarrow" was the "perfect poem."

Williams' prosody becomes the final topic, and after reviewing the meter of the poem, Grenier once again focuses on the chickens, saying that, "What's interesting to me in the form of the poem is that you don't know after the line 'beside the white,' what's going to come. Williams emphasizes the imagination as the constructive element in the making of the poem, and 'chickens' seemingly is constructed out of the form of the poem itself shaping itself into its next element — it's an invention of a particle of language."

PoemTalk is a co-production of PennSound, the Kelly Writers House and the Poetry Foundation. If you're interested in more information on the series or want to hear the previous twenty-nine episodes, please visit the PoemTalk blog, and don't forget that you can subscribe to the series through the iTunes music store. Grenier also figures into our next episode, in which his classic work, Sentences, is discussed by a panel including Filreis, Bob Perelman and first-time guests Jena Osman and Joseph Yearous-Algozin. Stay tuned also for future programs in the series which will address poems by, Susan Howe, Fanny Howe, Charles Olson, Sharon Mesmer and Bruce Andrews. Thanks, as always, for listening!

New Segue Series Readings by Howe, Friedlander, Place, Behrendt

Posted 4/7/2010 (link)

This weekend, we added the two most recent Segue readings to the series homepage, including one event that wrapped up hours earlier at the Bowery Poetry Club.

First up, however, is the March 27th pairing of Vanessa Place and Lynne Behrendt — the final reading organized this year by Nada Gordon and Gary Sullivan. Behrendt went first, reading two pieces: "I Am an Asshole" and "Luminous Flux." Next, Place took the stage, starting with a lengthy excerpt from Valerie Solanas' (in)famous S.C.U.M. Manifesto, which gave way to a litany of female genital euphemisms, Statement of Facts (part of UbuWeb's "Publishing the Unpublishable" series), and an excerpt from her 2005 book Dies: a Sentence. Poet Geof Huth has published a report on this reading on his blog, which is worth reading.

Under the coordination of Kristen Gallagher and Chris Alexander, Segue rounded the curve into the last two months of the reading season with last Saturday's event featuring Ben Friedlander and Fanny Howe. Friedlander's opening set featured poems spanning the past twenty-five years, including "By the Road to the Contagious Hospital," "CAT Scan," "No Vacancy," "Death Panel," "Kol Nidre," "Pater Noster," "Brain Event" and "The Stopper." Howe brought the reading to a close with a set that started with "The Descent," then moved on to include excerpts from her new manuscript, Come and See. Explaining her affinity for series, Howe let the poems run together, setting up connections and carry-overs, as she moved through the post-9/11 grouping On the Ground.

For more information about upcoming readers in the series — including Alice Notley, Bob Perelman, John Yau and Eileen Myles — check out the Segue Series calendar or become a fan of Segue on Facebook, and don't forget PennSound's Segue Series homepage where you can check out scores of readings from the Bowery Poetry Club over the past eight years (older readings from Segue's thirty-three year history are housed on our pages for the Ear Inn and Double Happiness, respectively).

Join PennSound at AWP in Denver

Posted 4/8/2010 (link)

We always relish opportunities to connect with our audience in person, given that our work involves a certain amount of technological distancing, and even communication through venues like Facebook and Twitter is an inexact science at best. Therefore, as we — like many of you — prepare to descend upon the multifarious maelstrom that is the AWP Conference in Denver, we're looking forward to talking to our listeners and poets whose work is housed in our archives.

Specifically, PennSound Managing Editor, Michael S. Hennessey will be taking part in panel S107, "Shared Locality: Fostering Community and Creating Posterity through Online Reading Series," taking place on Saturday, April 10th at 9:00AM in the Colorado Convention Center, Room 109. From our inception, a large facet of our work has been sharing the local with global audiences, whether through live broadcasts of events at the Kelly Writers House, preserving the historical legacy of the Segue Series (co-founded by PennSound co-director, Charles Bernstein in 1977), or distributing recordings from Cross-Cultural Poetics, Poetic Brooklyn or the Left Hand Reading Series (all series that were part of our archives from an early point). In recent years, we've sought a greater geographic diversity outside of our Philadelphia/New York homebase, adding series such as LA Lit (from Los Angeles), A Voice Box (from the Bay Area), POG Sound (from Tuscon, AZ), SUNY-Buffalo's Wednesdays @ 4Plus Series and the Bon Mot/ley and the Cy Press Reading Series (both from Cincinnati, OH), and looking forward to future series, such as the impressive archives of Belladonna*, there's much to be excited about.

To start exploring some of the many series distributed through PennSound, click on the title above to visit our Series homepage — where you'll find more than thirty different pages, spanning both time and space — and be sure to come see us in Denver on Saturday.

PennSound Congratulates Pulitzer Prize Winner Rae Armantrout

Posted 4/12/2010 (link)

It was exactly one month ago when we congratulated Rae Armantrout, whose Versed, already a finalist for the National Book Award (which went to Keith Waldrop's Transcendental Studies: A Trilogy), took home the Nation Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry. Today, we're ecstatic to announce the news — which broke just minutes ago — that Versed had claimed the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry as well: an almost triple-crown reminiscent the great achievement of John Ashbery's Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror, which took home all three prizes thirty-five years ago. In its citation, the Pulitzer committee praised Versed as "a book striking for its wit and linguistic inventiveness, offering poems that are often little thought-bombs detonating in the mind long after the first reading."

As we pointed out last month, you can listen to Armantrout reading selections from Versed as part of several different recordings in our archives. First, there's a May 2006 Close Listening reading and conversation with Charles Bernstein, featuring eight poems from the then in-progress manuscript. Readings from Versed (alongside poems from the then recently-published Next Life) also figured heavily into the poet's May 2007 Segue Series Reading at the Bowery Poetry Club and her September visit to our own Kelly Writers House. Finally, we have a July 2008 reading as part of the Artifact Series (archived as part of Andrew Kenower's A Voice Box), which takes place as Armantrout is putting the finishing touches on the collection, bringing together the sequences "Versed" and "Dark Matter."

In addition to these recordings, you can hear many more readings, talks and interviews, spanning the past thirty-one years, on PennSound's Rae Armantrout author page. Once again, we couldn't be happier to see a poet so widely loved and respected in the contemporary poetry community receive critical attention of this high order. And to everyone out there who's not Rae Armantrout, take heart — she probably won't be releasing a new book this year, so perhaps we'll be able to congratulate you in 2011.

Aaron Kramer: New Author Page

Posted 4/14/2010 (link)

With so much new material going up, we wanted to make sure you didn't miss one of our most exciting recent additions — a new author page for left-wing poet, Aaron Kramer. This project was initiated by PennSound co-director, Al Filreis, who provides some useful historical contexts for Kramer and his work in a blog entry posted late last month:

Kramer was (for a time, and perhaps for a long time) a member of the Communist Party of the U.S. He was involved in just about every radical issue, cultural and straight-out political, of this time: the 1940s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. Perhaps his first big break as a poet was his inclusion in the anthology, Six Poets in Search of An Answer (1944), which at a (brief) hopeful moment in the liberal-left alliance brought Aaron in with Max Bodenheim, Joy Davidman, Langston Hughes, Alfred Kreymborg (by then a vintage modernist who'd joined the radical left), Martha Millet, and Norman Rosten. His "Garcia Lorca" memorialized that poet murdered by Spanish fascists. "Berlin Air Raid" begins: "For ten years they were listening to different / sounds." "Natchez" is about southern racist violence, a place where "a hundred tabloid writers ran to the flame." I have been in touch with Aaron's daughter Laura for years. Recently she went through the attic and gathered together three shoeboxes of cassettes and VHS tapes and delivered them to us at PennSound. We are slowly going through them, digitizing them, and make them available — as always — for free download through our archive. Thanks to the work of Rebekah Caton, the first three readings are now up. Coming soon: a recording of a radio program featuring a discussion and performance by Kramer of poems from the sweatshops - verse of radical Jewish immigrants of the first years of the 20th century.

Some of those recordings mentioned by Filreis have since been posted, and altogether, you'll find eight recordings from 1959 to 1986 on our Aaron Kramer author page, including the Folkways Records release, Serenade: Poets of New York, two 1962 WBAI programs highlighting "Poets of the Sweatshops," radio broadcasts from KPFK (in 1963) and WNYC (in 1962 and 1975) and the two-and-a-half-hour performance, "An Aaron Kramer Concert," from the 1976 Dowling College Arts Festival. Our latest recording dates from 1986 at the Concord Academy Chapel.

Julie Carr: New Author Page

Posted 4/16/2010 (link)

We're bringing the week to a close by highlighting a new author page for Colorado-based poet and publisher, Julie Carr.

Our two most recent recordings showcase selections from Carr's latest collection, 100 Notes on Violence, selected as the 2009 winner of Ahsahta Press' Sawtooth Poetry Prize by Rae Armantrout (who praised it as a book of "great moral complexity, gravitas, and courage"). First up, from just over a month ago, is a reading in Cincinnati, OH as part of the Bon Mot/ley Reading Series, and this is nicely complemented by a recent appearance on Leonard Schwartz's Cross Cultural Poetics radio program — specfically episode #208, "Bernstein and Carr," which first aired on February 4, 2010.

A few months earlier, on December 3, 2009, Carr made her first appearance on the program in episode #202, "Path and Counterpath," to discuss the editorial philosophies of Counterpoint Press alongside her co-editor, Tim Roberts (one of several new shows we announced on PennSound Daily in January). Jumping back a year, our final recording, taken from POG Sound, comes from a March 2008 reading with with Frances Sjoberg as part of the POG series at The Drawing Studio. After starting her set with selections from the manuscript-in-progress of 100 Notes on Violence, she moves on to selections from her earlier collections, Equivocal (Alice James Press, 2007) and Mead: an Epithalamion (University of Georgia Press, 2004).

Charles Bernstein: NYC Launch for "All the Whiskey in Heaven: Selected Poems" at Zinc Bar

Posted 4/19/2010 (link)

We couldn't be more proud to start off this week with the New York City launch reading for Charles Bernstein's All the Whiskey in Heaven: Selected Poems, recorded March 28th at Zinc Bar.

The reading begins with a number of good friends and compatriots sharing some of their favorite selections from the decade-spanning collection, including Thom Donovan ("Come Shadow Come," "Kiwi Bird in a Kiwi Tree," "Bricklayer's Arms"), Kenny Goldsmith ("Lift Off"), Erica Hunt ("As If the Trees by Their Roots Had Hold of Us," "The Influence of Kinship Patterns upon Perception of an Ambiguous Stimulus") Dorothea Lasky ("Of Time and the Line," "Thank You for Saying Thank You"), Peter Gizzi ("Didn't We," "The Years as Swatches"), Tan Lin (The Italian Border of the Arts") and Elizabeth Willis ("The Voyage of Life," "Let's Just Say"). Bernstein himself brings the event to a close with a brief set comprised of the poems "Solidarity Is the Name We Give to What We Cannot Hold," "Verdi and Postmodernism," "This Poem is Intentionally Left Blank," "from 'Today's Not Opposite Day'" and the volume's title poem, "All the Whiskey in Heaven," and on our new page for this reading, you'll find the complete recording, as well as individual tracks for each poem, all wonderfully complemented by photographs by Lawrence Schwartzwald, like the one you see above.

For more information about this landmark volume, we direct you to the Electronic Poetry Center's page for the book and Bernstein's PennSound author page, where you'll find many more recordings of the poems contained therein. Stay tuned to PennSound Daily for our recent Kelly Writers House celebration of Charles and the book, which should be posted shortly.

Wallace Stevens Comes to PennSound

Posted 4/20/2010 (link)

Our week of wonderful new recordings continues with a truly monumental, and long-awaited, addition to the PennSound archives: Wallace Stevens. We're all ecstatic to able to share Stevens' work with our listenership, but for one member of the PennSound team in particular — co-director, Al Filreis, who's authored several books on the poet — this announcement is particularly special, the culmination of several years' hard work. Therefore, we're happy to yield the floor to him:

After months — several years — of digitizing, consulting, traveling, etc., we at PennSound are now ready to make available the recordings of Wallace Stevens reading his own poetry. We begin our new Stevens author page with two readings he gave at Harvard near the end of his life. Our friends at the Woodberry Poetry Room at Lamont Library (though organizationally Woodberry now is part of the Houghton Library system) have shared these with us. Peter Hanchak — only child of Holly Stevens who was the only child of Wallace and Elsie Stevens — has given us at PennSound permission to make available whatever Stevens recordings we can find. I'm personally very grateful to Peter, who clearly understands that PennSound is all about noncommercial, educational use. Thanks to Joan Richardson and John Serio who helped me work with Peter on this; and thanks to Christina Davis, new director at the Woodberry, and Don Share, former director there, for their help and advice as we've moved forward. It's our hope, of course, that the way Stevens is taught will at least somewhat change now that his own way of reading the poems is widely and freely available. Long live open access!

The two recordings Filreis mentions are only the start of what we hope will be an author archive as robust as our pages for William Carlos Williams, Ezra Pound or John Ashbery. In the coming months, we'll add new readings as we gather them, and seek out better quality recordings when possible (particularly the 1954 Boston reading). You'll also note that our Stevens page is rounded out with several commentaries, including PoemTalk #14 from February 2009, and recordings of Robert Duncan and Susan Howe. To start exploring, click on the title above.

Catherine Wagner: New Author Page

Posted 4/23/2010 (link)

Earlier this week, we put together a new author page for Catherine Wagner, showcasing a number of recent readings and interviews, the most recent of which, in fact, is just a week old — recorded last Thursday, April 15th, at Xavier University (where she read with William Howe). Tyrone Williams, who served as emcee for the evening, started his introduction by noting that, "for Cathy Wagner, the question of the body and sex and the other all function as an analogue to the relationship between the book and the reader and the author, which is to say her poetry investigates the very nature and possibility of relationships in general," and she ably demonstrated this with a wonderful set comprised entirely of poems from her most recent collection, My New Job (Fence Books, 2009).

Moving chronologically backwards, we have "On Writing with Catherine Wagner," a podcast by poet and scholar, Tom Orange, recorded at Vanderbilt University on February 18, 2008: a seventy-five minute program featuring a reading segment, engaging conversation between the two poets and a question-and-answer session with the audience. Next up, we have a brief set in Tucson's Dinnerware Gallery on October 14, 2006, consisting of just two poems — "My New Job" and "Everyone in the Room is a Representative of the World at Large" — which comes to us courtesy of POG Sound.

Finally, we have a pair of apperances on Leonard Schwartz's Cross Cultural Poetics program. On show #98, "Macular Hole and Other Oralities" (released January 22, 2006) featured selections from Wagner's second collection, Macular Hole (Fence Books, 2004), and she returned a little over a month later for show #102, "These Archipelagoes," to read from the then-in-progress manuscript for My New Job. We've also augmented the aforementioned recordings with a link to audio and video of Wagner reading at the SoundEye Festival in Cork, Ireland in 2005, which are housed at Miami University's wonderful archive, Meshworks.

PoemTalk 31: Robert Grenier's "Sentences"

Posted 4/26/2010 (link)

Apprentice extraordinare, Jeff Boruszak, returns to PennSound Daily with a write-up of the latest PoemTalk program:

Last week saw the release of another new episode of the PoemTalk Podcast Series. This time, host Al Filreis was joined by first-time PoemTalk panelists Joseph Yearous-Algozin and Jena Osman, while perennial guest Bob Perelman made another appearance. Up for discussion was Robert Grenier's Sentences, a work consisting of 500 note cards in a box, with excerpts coming from a 1981 reading at the St. Mark's Poetry Project in New York.

The discussion begins on the line, "Bird, I wonder if I do," as Filreis ponders the reason Grenier repeats this sentence. Yearous-Algozin and Osman both reference a 2006 interview with Grenier conducted by PennSound co-director Charles Bernstein, as part of the Close Listening series, as Osman suggests that the line mimics the whistling of of a birdsong, while Yearous-Algozin intimates that Grenier is using this birdsong to move away from speech patterns, and the repetition is Grenier, "trying to find a way to speak the sentence." Osman responds by stating that the repetition is an effect of the physical presence of the text — the note cards suggest multiple readings.

Perelman slightly disagrees, arguing that while there is a miming in the vein of Pound's ideograms, Grenier also famously stated, "I HATE SPEECH," a statement that suggests not the he is trying to get the line right, but that he is attempting to defamiliarize the statement. Osman responds that she feels the poem is less about defamiliarization, and more about "decontextualization of the common place." She goes on to discuss "internet attention," which she describes as "so destructive of reading attention and absorptive attention," in its relation to the difference between the text and the performance.

The conversation then shifts towards the audience reaction in the reading, first focusing on the word "JOE," whose repetition, in Osman's view, plays off of the expectations of the audience, as well as the physical act of turning to the next card. Perelman goes on to discuss a duality between the "sacredness of the print" and a "Shaggy Dog sociality" that affects the repetition. Filreis then bring Grenier's humor into the fold, questioning the laughing audience and lines such as "cookies over Lake Superior," in what would otherwise be a serious avant-garde moment. Perelman remarks on the "hyper-quizzical readings" of Grenier's performances, and Yearous-Algozin mentions the combination of "schtickiness and seriousness" in Grenier's work.

Osman, meanwhile, brings up the order of the cards in the box, and a natural resistance to changing this order — an act encouraged by Grenier. Dubbed as "fetishizing the box," by Perelman, Filreis asks about the temptation to read the entire box novelistically. "There is something about these basically life-long projects of disjunction and anti-narrative work," Perelman states, "that ultimately become [...] a species of novel for the caring, contextualizing reader." Osman disagrees, however, responding that the autobiographical nature of the work is somewhat "irrelevant" in the context of the self-sufficient cards.

The conversation ends with a question posed to Yearous-Algozin about the valuation associated with the different cards. He discusses the various types of cards in the box — some simple, some subtle — all doing different things, ranging from concrete poetry to bits of household conversation, concluding that the network of cards, "puts a tremendous amount of pressure on the individual card as you're experiencing it, and then taking away that pressure as it sits in that network."

For those curious about Grenier's work, be sure to take a look at Grenier's PennSound author page, where you'll find not only the aforementioned interview, but longer recordings of Sentences, as well as a selection of readings from the 1970s to the present. A web edition of Sentences is also available through Whale Cloth Press.

PoemTalk is a co-production of PennSound, the Kelly Writers House and the Poetry Foundation. If you're interested in more information on the series or want to hear the previous thirty episodes, please visit the PoemTalk blog, and don't forget that you can subscribe to the series through the iTunes music store. Join us next time as Al Filreis is joined by Jessica Lowenthal, Marcella Durand, and Jennifer Scappettone to discuss the loaded gun of Susan Howe's Emily Dickinson. Stay tuned for future programs in the series which will address poems by Fanny Howe, Charles Olson, Sharon Mesmer and Bruce Andrews. Thanks, as always, for listening!

Tenney Nathanson: Reading at Simon Fraser University, 2010

Posted 4/28/2010 (link)

We just got our hands on this recording of Tucson-based poet, Tenney Nathanson, reading at Simon Fraser University on March 18, 2010, and couldn't wait to share it with our listeners. After introductory comments about the influence of Robin Blaser upon his work and his joy in being in British Columbia, the reading begins with several selections from his collection, Home on the Range (The Night Sky with Stars in My Mouth) (O Books, 2005), before moving on to his latest book, Ghost Snow Falls Through the Void (Globalization) (Chax Press, 2010), whose "inserted accounts of daily life such as war on Iraq" are likened, by Leslie Scalapino, to "Spicer's notion of the poet taking dictation from the radio."

This reading is one of two new addition to our Tenney Nathanson author page since we launched it last spring — the other being a POG Sound reading at The Drawing Studio in Tucson in September 2009. You'll also find two earlier POG Sound readings (from The Poetry Center at the University of Arizona in 2007 and 2008, respectively) and "Bad Boy Zen" (an excerpt from Ghost Snow Falls Through the Void [Globalization]), performed on "A Poet's Moment" on KXCI-FM in 2008. We'd also like to thank Frank Parker for his assistance with this recording.

"Professional Human Beings," by Pauline Cavillot

Posted 4/30/2010 (link)

We're closing out this week with a wonderful radio documentary that explores poetry, politics, locality and resilience in the aftermath of disaster. In the words of producer Pauline Cavillot, Professional Human Beings, "is about the essential role played by the arts in the recovery of post-Katrina New Orleans, expressed by New Orleans people: poets, an art therapist, a theatre producer."

Some of the poets involved in Professional Human Beings include Michael Ford (whose collection, Carbon, records life before and after Hurricane Katrina), Dave Brinks (author of The Caveat Onus and proprietor of The Gold Mine Saloon), Bill Lavender (whose imprint, Lavender Ink, publishes work by New Orleans poets, as well as non-local authors like Hank Lazer and Randy Prunty) and Brett Evans and Frank Sherlock (co-authors of Ready-to-Eat Individual, who're pictured above). Also included in the program are Holly Wherry, an art therapist who worked with the children of New Orleans post-Katrina, and Barbara Motley, founder of Théâtre Cabaret Le Chat Noir. We've provided individual segments for each speaker, and you can also stream or download the entire forty-five minute documentary on our Professional Human Beings homepage, where you'll also find links to a photo gallery. You'll also want to keep an eye out for NOLA: Interviews, Essays and Photographs of Resilience in New Orleans, a companion volume edited by Cavillot and featuring many of the same participants, which will be published by Small Anchor Press later this summer.