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All that You Touch / You Change Poetry Festival
April 7 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
In answer to these extraordinary and changing times, Poet Guides José Felipe Alvergue, Tamiko Beyer, Chen Chen, S. Brook Corfman, Carolyn Forché, and Aracelis Girmay will lead attendees in an offering (a meditation, a reading or a revelation) followed by a writing prompt. The audience will respond in real-time writing, creating and listening together as an act of communal power. Organized by Fordham University’s Poetic Justice Institute, in partnership with Fordham College at Lincoln Center Dean’s Office, The Axe Houghton Foundation, Cave Canem, Kundiman, and The Ampersand and The Comma.
CART and ASL interpretation will be provided.
José Felipe Alvergue is the author of three books of poetry, and Associate Professor of Contemporary Literature and Transnationalism at the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire. José’s third book, scenery, was selected by Fordham University Press as the winner of the Poets Out Loud Editor’s Prize. He has spent the pandemic hosting princess dance parties and making scattered notes towards writing on national identity.
Tamiko Beyer is the author of the forthcoming poetry collection Last Days, from Alice James Books. Her other books and chapbooks are We Come Elemental (Alice James Books) winner of the Kinereth Gensler award, Dovetail (co-authored with Kimiko Hahn, Slapering Hol Press) and bough breaks (Meritage Press). Her poetry and articles have been published widely, including by Denver Quarterly, Idaho Review, Dusie, Black Warrior Review, Georgia Review, Lit Hub, and the Rumpus. She publishes Starlight & Strategy, a monthly newsletter for living life wide awake and shaping change. She has received awards, fellowships, and residencies from PEN America, Kundiman, Hedgebrook, VONA, and the Astraea Lesbian Writers Fund, among others. A social justice communications writer and strategist, she spends her days writing truth to power.
Chen Chen / 陳琛 is the author of When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities (BOA Editions, 2017), which was longlisted for the National Book Award and won the Thom Gunn Award, among other honors. In 2019 Bloodaxe Books published the UK edition. Chen is also the author of four chapbooks, most recently GESUNDHEIT! (with Sam Herschel Wein & out from Glass Poetry Press). His work appears/is forthcoming in many publications, including Poetry, Poem-a-Day, and three editions of The Best American Poetry (2015, 2019, & 2021). He has received a Pushcart Prize and fellowships from Kundiman and the National Endowment for the Arts. He holds an MFA from Syracuse University and a PhD from Texas Tech University. He teaches at Brandeis University as the Jacob Ziskind Poet-in-Residence. He also teaches for the low-residency MFA programs at New England College and Stonecoast. With Sam, he co-runs the journal, Underblong. He lives in Waltham, MA with his partner, Jeff Gilbert and their pug, Mr. Rupert Giles.
S. Brook Corfman is the author of two poetry collections: My Daily Actions, or The Meteorites, a New York Times Best Poetry Book of 2020 chosen by Cathy Park Hong for the Fordham University Press POL Prize; and Luxury, Blue Lace, chosen by Richard Siken for the 2018 Autumn House Rising Writer Prize & hailed as an “extraordinary debut” by Publishers Weekly. Corfman is also the author of the letterpress artist book Meteorites (DoubleCross Press), the digital collection of performance pieces The Anima (GaussPDF), and the chaplet Frames (Belladonna* #256). Born and raised in Chicago, they now live in a turret in Pittsburgh.
Carolyn Forché’s first volume, Gathering the Tribes, winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets Prize, was followed by The Country Between Us, The Angel of History, and Blue Hour. Her most recent collection is In the Lateness of the World. She is also the author of the memoir What You Have Heard Is True (Penguin Random House, 2019), a devastating, lyrical, and visionary memoir about a young woman’s brave choice to engage with horror in order to help others, which was nominated for the 2019 National Book Awards. She has translated Mahmoud Darwish, Claribel Alegria, and Robert Desnos. Her famed international anthology, Against Forgetting, has been praised by Nelson Mandela as “itself a blow against tyranny, against prejudice, against injustice,” and is followed by the 2014 anthology The Poetry of Witness. In 1998 in Stockholm, she received the Edita and Ira Morris Hiroshima Foundation for Peace and Culture Award for her human rights advocacy and the preservation of memory and culture.
Aracelis Girmay is a poet and teacher. She is the author of three books of poems: the black maria (BOA Editions, 2016); Teeth (Curbstone Press, 2007), winner of the GLCA New Writers Award; and Kingdom Animalia (BOA Editions, 2011), winner of the 2011 Isabella Gardner Poetry Award and a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. She is also the author/illustrator of the collage-based picture book changing, changing and is the co-author of the picture book What Do You Know? Other recent projects include the curation of How to Carry Water: Selected Poems of Lucille Clifton. She is on the editorial board of the African Poetry Book Fund and is the current Blessing the Boats Selections Editor-at-Large. For her work, Girmay was nominated for a Neustadt International Prize for Literature in 2018.