Event Review: Poets Chris Green and Richard Jones Reading

Poets in Season: a reading with Chris Green and Richard Jones

By Michael Garza
Contributor to The Underground

On Monday evening, staff and students gathered for a poetry reading. Readings can run the gamut of atmosphere, from the bombast of a juke joint to the still of temple ceremony. Yet, on the fourth floor of the Arts & Letters Hall, tucked in a kind of penthouse suite overlooking complete darkness, the buzz shifted between a lounge reading and lecture. Professor Richard Jones and Chris Green came to share poems, and that was enough to pack the place.

Professor Richard Jones, who planned to share poems from Stranger on Earth, his 2018 full-length collection, instead took on the challenge he gives his students, and shared poems fresh off the press. “I discovered only last year that potatoes come in different colors.” said Professor Jones, and in one poem an angel visits to ask how the purple potatoes taste. Jones joked about being near-blind without glasses, but showed no lack of lucidity in words. In another piece entitled “The Proposal”, he tells a companion “as long as you don’t mind eating rabbit for the rest of your life, you’ll be happy”, a suggestion he miraculously charges with appeal. 

Jones was a warm and insightful lead-off hitter for Professor Chris Green, Director of Writing & Publishing Internships at DePaul, who’s newest poetry collection Everywhere West just dropped in July of 2019. Professor Green read selections from Everywhere, and alluded to a “video poem” based off the titular piece that would be shown later in the evening. Green opened with a poem about his visit to Robert Frost’s grave where he ran into Michael O’Keefe, the actor from Caddyshack and Roseanne fame. The absurdity of life is given microphone and family in Green’s poetry. “One is never more dead than in Vermont in January” says Green, and his knowledge of Chicago winters reinforces this point. In a favorite of mine called “The Prodigal Daughter”, the young lady “writes my name on a piece of paper, crosses it out, and hands it back to me.” This fiery spirit keeps billowing, as Green writes “you are so serious about the predicament of nature you keep a field journal at five.”

Before the video plays, Jones and Green perform a shared reading of “Conversations with a Dog”, a dialogue anyone would kill to have. Lines like “If there is anger in me it is squirrels” and “you starved yourself for a week and, like a saint, your eyes went cloudy” curled the room tighter around some metaphysical fireplace they were building.

The lights dimmed and Chris Green played the video poem “Everywhere West“, a time-lapse recording of his friend Mark Neumann’s cross-country drive with that title poem as soundtrack. Traveling along this common artery of the American landscape was a moving experience, and a welcome innovation for the presentation of poetry in broader culture.

At DePaul, the gifts are spread generously, among the student body and teachers alike.

Call for Submissions: Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium

The Johns Hopkins University’s first annual Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium is now open for submissions!

This will be a new annual two-day event at Johns Hopkins main campus in Baltimore, Maryland and it will offer students across the country the chance to disseminate their humanities research on a national scale. The event will be this spring, April 3rd and 4th, 2020 and the application portal is now open.

This symposium is open to undergraduate students from any two-year or four-year college or university who would like to present their original scholarship in the humanities. The university hopes to have 400 participants this year and will also be offering a select number of travel grants to help students afford participation. In addition to the multiple panels of student papers and presentations (including original creative works), they will also have a wonderful keynote delivered by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Anthony Doerr and multiple professional development panels featuring graduate students and faculty in Johns Hopkins’ humanities departments and centers. Students studying all areas of the humanities are welcome to attend.

Those interested can learn more at the conference site.

Volunteers Needed: StoryStudio Chicago Writers Festival

StoryStudio Chicago is looking for volunteers to help with their conference on October 5th and 6th!

It is StoryStudio’s 2nd annual Writers Festival hosted by Columbia College Chicago. Curated by Artistic Director Rebecca Makkai, the two-day Festival features an amazing line-up of authors led by Keynote Speaker Garth Greenwell. Both graduate and undergraduate students are welcome to volunteer time in exchange for free conference attendance around their shifts. 

The conference link is here: https://www.storystudiochicago.com/storystudio-writers-festival/

Interested students can contact StoryStudio here: https://www.storystudiochicago.com/contact-us/

Barbara Smith Writer-in-Residence Program

Twelve Literary Arts (TLA) is an intergenerational incubator for poets and writers of color based in Cleveland. They are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit literary arts education organization that work with poets and writers from the time they are 14 years of age all the way through their mid-careers.
One of their signature programs is The Barbara Smith Writer-In-Residence program. This program invites writers of color worldwide to apply for one of two opportunities to serve as writer-in-residence. The residencies last 1-3 months, depending on the needs of the writer. Twelve Literary Arts provides cost of travel, an apartment, and a $5,000 stipend for a poet or writer of color to bring a substantive literary work to completion for publication. For more on this program, please feel free to visit the Barbara Smith Writer-In-Residence page here.

Crook & Folly Call for Applications

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Crook & Folly, DePaul University’s award-winning, all-student, journal of literature and art, seeks applications from graduate and undergraduate students for two challenging and exciting volunteer positions as 2019 Editors-in-Chief.

The new editors will begin work planning for the new year late this Spring 2018 and will hire their section editors during Fall quarter 2018. Editors-In-Chief must be available and in residence during all regular quarters of the entire 2018-2019 academic year.

Candidates for Editor-in-Chief should write a one-page (250 words) application letter describing relevant experience and commitment as well as vision for the magazine, and email it, as an attachment, to Professor Borich on or before 11:59 PM on Monday May 7th, 2018: bborich@depaul.edu. We will conduct interviews between Friday May 11th and Friday May 18th

Please apply only if you are interested in the Editor-in-Chief position. All applications are considered, but current Crook & Folly staff members receive priority consideration for the head editor slots. We strongly encourage newcomers to apply to editorial staff positions in the Fall. Crook & Folly will call for staff and section editor applications in September 2018.

If you have questions about what the work of the Editors-in-Chief entails,  please email crookandfolly@gmail.com and ask the the current Crook & Folly editors Emily and Madeline for their assistance.

 

Writers Guild Aloud! Autumn Quarter

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Every quarter, DePaul’s Writers Guild hosts an open mic Aloud!

Thursday, November 9, 7 PM
LPC Writing Center
2320 N Kenmore SAC 212
Chicago, Illinois 60614

Come share your work and/or listen to others read, celebrate DePaul’s writing community, and make new friends!

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Apply for New DePaul Art Museum Student Advisory Board

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DPAM is composing its first ever student advisory board, an ideal position for students with a passion for art who wish to be involved with art museums beyond the classroom.
Members will act as ambassadors for the museum and be responsible for planning the museum’s annual student night, engage in promoting the museum as a resource for students, as well as supporting programming at the museum on campus. This opportunity is open to graduate and undergraduate students in all departments.

Learn more and apply!