Won't You Celebrate with Me?: Linda Pastan, Marilyn Chin, and Ellen Bass (2018)

The O.B. Hardison Poetry Series, co-sponsored with the Academy of American Poets, presented Won't You Celebrate with Me?: Linda Pastan, Marilyn Chin, and Ellen Bass on September 17, 2018 at 7:30pm in the Folger's Elizabethan Theatre. Introductions and conversation moderated by Jean Nordhaus. This project was supported by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanties, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Linda Pastan

Linda Pastan. Carina Romano.

Linda Pastan's work is noted for precise and articulate verses that frame and treasure beauty in small, glorious moments. Her collections include Insomnia, Traveling Light, and Queen of a Rainy Country. Among her many awards and honors are a Dylan Thomas Award, and the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize.

Pastan has read for the O.B. Hardison Poetry series six times previously, on September 15, 2014, January 12, 2009, February 14, 1995, January 14, 1991, March 29, 1988, and February 7, 1978.

Marilyn Chin

Marilyn Chin. Jon Medel.

Marilyn Chin was born in Hong Kong and raised in the U.S. Chin has said that her poetry is “steeped with the themes and travails of exile, loss, and assimilation.” Author of four books of poetry and a novel, Chin is the recipient of many awards and honors including the PEN/Josephine Miles Literary Award, the Anisfield Wolf Book Award in 2015, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship and two NEA Fellowships.

Ellen Bass

Ellen Bass. Irene Young.

Ellen Bass's most recent poetry collection, Like a Beggar, “pulses with sex, humor, and compassion” (The New York Times). Winner of the Lambda Literary Award and the Pablo Neruda Prize, Bass has also written several works of nonfiction.

Reviews and excerpts

From "Why Are Your Poems so Dark?"

Isn't the moon dark too,

most of the time?

And doesn't the white page

seem unfinished

without the dark stain

of alphabets?

Excerpt from “Why Are Your Poems so Dark?” from Queen of a Rainy Country by Linda Pastan © 2008 by Linda Pastan. Used with permission.