Poetry: Tara Hardy and Gary Copeland Lilley
Join us for an electric afternoon of poetry when Tara Hardy and Gary Copeland Lilley come to read from their latest works. Hardy and Lilley will be reading in our Used Book Annex on Sunday, Sept. 17, at 3pm.
Hardy's My, My, My, My, My, short-listed for the 2017 Washington State Book Awards, is a powerful and insightful gift to readers. Suddenly stricken by a life-threatening condition, Hardy finds she has slipped into an alternate reality, one in which her life and her livelihood are no longer to be counted on. Oddly, she finds it's a place populated with not just hope, but a newfound appreciation for the splendors of the physical world. Her fight to stay alive, while terrifying, is deeply vibrant.
Gary Copeland Lilley's collection, The Bushman's Medicine Show, is a southern gothic testament delivered by an archetypical denizen of the modern south, a sort of Everyman from the Carolina low-country traversing the territories of family, the spirits, society, culture, and identity, while refusing to be eradicated. If there is some type of stigmata, a mark, some identifier of people who have transcended southern stigmas, then the personas, certainly the Bushman, surely wear such a mark. There is the sweltering of American southern heat and humidity in these poems: the dualities within nature and existence, that hard sacred and secular ride that Lilley seems very familiar with. The voice, the music of regional language, the character speech, is an essential element, the proper vehicle that drives these poems down the streets, the dirt roads, and through the piney woods. Riding with Bushman, lean forward in your seat, turn the music on.
Tara Hardy is the working class, Queer, Femme, chronically ill founder of Bent Writing Institute for LGBTIQ writers in Seattle. She grew up under the great big sky of Michigan but now writes at the majestic hem of Mount Rainier in Seattle.
Her first book of poems Bring Down the Chandeliers primarily addresses being a father-daughter incest survivor. Tara holds an MFA from Vermont College and is a former Richard Hugo House Writer in Residence, former Seattle Poet Populist, and alumnae of Hedgebrook. She is an instructor at Seattle Central College, Richard Hugo House, and Path With Art. She is also the Arts Director at Gay City.
Gary Copeland Lilley is originally from Sandy Cross, North Carolina, and was a longtime resident of Washington, D.C., where he was a founding member of the Black Rooster Collective. He currently resides in Port Townsend. Lilley received the D.C. Commission on the Arts Fellowship for Poetry in 1996 and again in 2000, and he earned a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry from Warren Wilson College in 2002. He is also the author of four poetry collections: Alpha Zulu, Black Poem, The Reprehensibles, and The Subsequent Blues.