Yale Working Group in Contemporary Poetry

Lyn Hejinian Visits WGCP

Posted in Announcements, Events, WGCP Communications by beineckepoetry on March 29, 2010

Poet, essayist, and translator, Lyn Hejinian will visit the WGCP for a special session on Wednesday, April 14 from 3-5 pm in room 39 at the Beinecke Library, 121 Wall Street (information about visiting the Beinecke Library:  Beinecke Seminar Room Guidelines). The group will discuss Hejinian’s recent book, Saga/Circus (Omnidawn 2008).

Hejinian will give a public reading from her work in the Yale Collection of American Literature Reading Series at the Beinecke Library on Tuesday, April 13 at 4 pm. For details visit: Readings at Beinecke Library. This event is free and open to the public.

For more information about and examples of Lyn Hejinian’s work, visit the following sites:

Lyn Hejinian at the Electronic Poetry Center (EPC): http://epc.buffalo.edu/authors/hejinian/

Lyn Hejinian at the Academy of American Poets : http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/396

Lyn Hejinian on PennSound: http://writing.upenn.edu/pennsound/x/Hejinian.php


Saga / Circus

Posted in Announcements, Events, WGCP Communications by beineckepoetry on March 11, 2010

The next session of the Contemporary Poetics Group will be on March 26;  we will be discussing the work of Lyn Hejinian, a poet whose work we have looked at on two different occasions in the past.  Specifically her most recent book Saga/Circus (there are three copies left at our mailbox of the Whitney Humanities Center). Professor Hejinian will be reading at the Beinecke Library on April 13 at 4 PM.  The next day (April 14) she will meet with us for a special session of the WGCP to her discuss her work.  The time and place of that discussion will be announced shortly.

A useful review of Saga/Circus by the poet Joyelle McSweeney is available here:

About Saga/Circus, McSweeney writes:
In Lyn Hejinian’s latest book, two long poems (but they hardly feel long) make short work of narrative and dismantle genre with an alert and damaging wit. First comes “Circus” or “Lola.” This prose piece, with its attention to rings, battles, payers and players, moves characters through a tightening, finally dismaying cycle of events. Next comes “Saga,” also titled “The Distance,” which applies pressure to two figures of continuity: the first–person speaker and the sea voyage. Together, these texts form a contrast of cyclicality and stasis and test the limits of writing as vehicle and vessel of both violence and knowledge.

Recordings of Hejinian reading from her work are archived by PennSound:

A recent issue of Jacket includes a short essay by Hejinian on closure:

About Lyn Hejinian
Lyn Hejinian is a poet, essayist, and translator; she was born in the San Francisco Bay Area and lives in Berkeley. Published collections of her writing include Writing is An Aid to Memory, My Life, Oxota: A Short Russian Novel, Leningrad (written in collaboration with Michael Davidson, Ron Silliman, and Barrett Watten), The Cell, The Cold of Poetry, and A Border Comedy; the University of California Press published a collection of her essays entitled The Language of Inquiry. Translations of her work have been published in France, Spain, Japan, Italy, Russia, Sweden, and Finland. She is the recipient of a Writing Fellowship from the California Arts Council, a grant from the Poetry Fund, and a Translation Fellowship (for her Russian translations) from the National Endowment for the Arts; she was awarded an Award for Independent Literature by the Soviet literary organization “Poetics Function” in Leningrad in 1989. She has travelled and lectured extensively in Russia as well as Europe, and Description and Xenia, two volumes of her translations from the work of the contemporary Russian poet Arkadii Dragomoshchenko, have been published by Sun and Moon Press. From 1976 – 1984, Hejinian was the editor of Tuumba Press and from 1981 to 1999 she was the co-editor (with Barrett Watten) of Poetics Journal. She is also the co-director (with Travis Ortiz) of Atelos, a literary project commissioning and publishing cross-genre work by poets; Atelos was nominated as one of the best independent literary presses by the Firecracker Awards in 2001. Other collaborative projects include a work entitled The Eye of Enduring undertaken with the painter Diane Andrews Hall and exhibited in 1996, a composition entitled Qúê Trân with music by John Zorn and text by Hejinian, a mixed media book entitled The Traveler and the Hill and the Hill created with the painter Emilie Clark (Granary Press, 1998), and the experimental film Letters Not About Love, directed by Jacki Ochs, for which Hejinian and Arkadii Dragomoshchenko wrote the script. In the fall of 2000, she was elected the sixty-sixth Fellow of the Academy of American Poets. She teaches at the University of California, Berkeley.