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An Evening of Poetry with Kevin Finn and friends

April 18 @ 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm

Free
Readings with:
Kevin Finn
Kristofer Collins
Bill Hughes
Elijah Bennedict Brown
With special musical guest:
Robin Vote

 

 

It’s been 10 years since Kevin Finn’s debut poetry collection, “Sea of Dust,” was published. Finn’s poems were austere and contemplative, largely concerning themselves with questions surrounding the role of the artist as a witness to one’s inner life as well as to the imperiled state of the natural world.

After a very long wait, we now have Finn’s follow-up, “Consequence of Dream.” To say the intervening years were disorienting in this country would be an incredible understatement. Finn’s poems certainly reflect the social and political tremors that have the ground perpetually shaking under our feet. Finn’s lyricism is as strong as ever, but this new book is itself a quaking thing.

In “The Last Poem.” Finn writes of “pages painted on sand” and “a diaspora of self.” Later in the poem “Flies,” he admits “I speak in strange tongues.”

Destabilization is a core theme in these poems. Whereas his earlier poems felt sharply present in their rendering of the physical world, here there is a kind of plush psychedelia at play where vision and visions (in the ecstatic and spiritual sense) interweave like a caduceus, here golden and lovely:

“Beyond the white room,

my words, heavy with snow,

a display of comfort:

these things lead to the heart.”

(“Flight”)

And here disturbing and darkly comic:

“It was hit or miss, but I looked for your remains.

I never found a skull, a tooth or a brain.

I was knighted that evening beneath

the Royal Shakespeare Company’s

lights at the mansion,

where Kate Middleton gave you the credit card

and the use of her gold Mercedes.”

(“Lioness”)

“I build from beneath, the architect / of new dreams,” Finn writes in “Wood Street Station.” There is a definite Orphic quality to this new collection, a dreamlike underworld is traversed and mapped. Kevin Finn is a very fine poet. Here’s hoping we don’t have to wait another decade to hear from him again.

 

Book editor Kristofer Collins review In Pittsburgh Magazine

Details

Date:
April 18
Time:
8:00 pm - 11:00 pm
Cost:
Free

Venue

Poetry Lounge
313 North Ave. + Google Map