Changing Light Reading at the Raven

I’m thrilled to be able to share a reading with two very fine poets — Peter Wright and Kathleen Johnson — at 7:30 p.m., Sat., Nov. 15th at the Raven bookstore. I met Peter over 17 years ago when he showed up in a poetry writing class I was teaching at the University of Kansas, and he dazzled me with his raw and alive poetry, which has continued to unfold over the years. I met Kathleen 20 years ago when we had babies to balance around our poetry, and even then, I was taken by how she used language is such vivid and delicate ways. I share a poem from each of them below. Please join us for the reading, in which we each will read poetry that has to do with changing light, sky and land.

Peter Wright — from Cloud Poems
nothing is distinct
but echoing kettle drums
in this summer sky

from green rolling hills
a huge rose in black and white
blooming and blooming

slate green above
your inhabitants have morphed
into waves of rain

come hither earthbound
imagine we are your own
animals to ride

far away voices
hang in storm clouds and pouring
issue from my mouth

Kathleen Johnson — from her debut collection, Burn

Muse

Poetry will always be
a wild animal
William Stafford, You Must Revise Your Life

I’ve seen a wolf
in the woods of a dream.

her canine contours run
ravenous with color:
sage, pine, sun-yellow,
adn canyon-brown, the rich
carnelian of a Mexican sunset.

Lean, leggy,
pink tongue wet and lolling
she stares me straight in the eye.

Silver moonlight on her back,
wildfire burning in her eyes,
she circles close in the night
daring me.