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April 5, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm$15
Henri Cole celebrating the release of
from New York Review Books
Henri Cole’s Orphic Paris combines autobiography, diary, essay, and prose poetry with photographs to create a new form of elegiac memoir. With Paris as a backdrop, Cole, an award-winning American poet, explores with fresh and penetrating insight the nature of friendship and family, poetry and solitude, the self and freedom.
Cole writes of Paris, “For a time, I lived here, where the call of life is so strong. My soul was colored by it. Instead of worshiping a creator or man, I cared fully for myself, and felt not guilt and confessed nothing, and in this place, I wrote, I was nourished, and I grew.” Written under the tutelary spirit of Orpheus—mystic, oracular, entrancing—Orphic Paris is an intimate Paris journal and a literary commonplace book that is a touching, original, brilliant account of the city.
What has been said about the work of Henri Cole
Henri Cole’s Orphic Paris is a remarkable work—a poet’s most intimate diary, written entirely in Paris, in a sequence of visits that take us into the interior of the city as into the interior of the questing poet’s soul. The voice of the poet here is confiding, erudite, tender, unexpected in its sympathies and discoveries; like Henri Cole’s extraordinary poetry, it is both finely crafted and yet—seemingly—artless, unpretentious. One of the great pleasures of Orphic Paris is the poet’s delight in the work and words of others—fellow poets, artist-friends, Parisians who drift into his ardently observant life, and move on.
—Joyce Carol Oates
Henri Cole was born in Fukuoka, Japan, to a French mother and an American father. He has published nine collections of poetry, including Middle Earth, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer. He has received many awards for his work, including the Jackson Prize, the Kingsley Tufts Award, the Rome Prize, the Berlin Prize, the Lenore Marshall Award, and the Medal in Poetry from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His most recent collection of poetry is Nothing to Declare. He teaches at Claremont McKenna College and lives in Boston.
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