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POETRY Presents: Eliza Griswold
Thursday, January 19, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (CST)
*FREE RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER AVAILABLE, HOWEVER, a limited number of standby tickets will be released one hour prior to the event on a first-come, first-served basis.
“We talk about survivor’s guilt, but not about observer’s guilt. For journalists, this is particularly acute, as we are paid to watch suffering and paid more during war. For poets, it’s even worse,” writes Eliza Griswold in the January 2012 issue of Poetry. In her notebook-style essay, Griswold tells of her experiences on the island of Lampedusa, the entry point for Libyan refugees crossing the border into Europe. She examines the difficulty of writing prose or poetry about human crises. In an effort to understand the problem, she asks a priest on the island “if, in his opinion, Lampedusa is more Europe or Africa”:
“Geographically this is Africa but politically this is Europe.”
“What side of the story is the press missing?”
“The human side,” he says.
Eliza Griswold speaks about what journalists have described as the “human tragedy” of the Lampedusa refugee crisis, discusses her life as a journalist and poet, and reads her own poems. A reception follows.
When & Where
The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience. The Poetry Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery, and encouraging new kinds of poetry through innovative partnerships, prizes, and programs. Opened to the public in June 2011, the Poetry Foundation building in Chicago provides new space for the Foundation’s extensive roster of public programs and events. It also houses a public garden, a library, and an exhibition gallery, as well as the offices of the Poetry Foundation and Poetry magazine. For more information, please visit www.poetryfoundation.org.