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Poetry in Conversation, No. 1

October 22, 2013 @ 7:30 pm


We’ve been wanting to read, think about, and discuss some enduring poetry books with some vibrant company (you), so tonight we begin what we’re calling Poetry in Conversation, and we hope you’ll come over to our place and take part. Our first selection is Spring and All, that groundbreaking collection of prose and poetry published by William Carlos Williams in 1923 and recently rereleased in a facsimile edition by New Directions with the bonus of an introduction by C.D. Wright. It’s a small volume of 96 digest-size pages with a plain blue cover, but its effect on readers and writers was and continues to be immense. If you don’t already own a copy of Spring and All, from now through the evening of the conversation, you can buy it from Open Books at 15% off the cover price of $12.95, which is $11. While we have a couple in stock now, we’d appreciate hearing from you if know you’re going to want a copy so we can estimate how many additional books to order. We’re looking forward to exploring this totemic but still vibrant book with you, from which we share this poem—


In passing with my mind
on nothing in the world

but the right of way
I enjoy on the road by

virtue of the law—
I saw

an elderly man who
smiled and looked away

to the north past a house—
a woman in blue

who was laughing and
leaning forward to look up

into the man’s half
averted face

and a boy of eight who was
looking at the middle of

the man’s belly
at a watchchain—

The supreme importance
of this nameless spectacle

sped me by them
without a word—

Why bother where I went?
for I went spinning on the

four wheels of my car
along the wet road until

I saw a girl with one leg
over the rail of a balcony


October 22, 2013
7:30 pm
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Open Books: A Poem Emporium
2414 N. 45th Street
Seattle, 98103 United States
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(206) 633-0811

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