30/30 Poetic Vision: Day Sixteen

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Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets throughout the United States band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

In honor of this month, Naropa’s Jack Kerouac School is launching its second annual 30/30 Poetic Vision, featuring daily experiments by JKS students, staff, and faculty. Our community members were asked to contemplate and engage with text as visual and audio mediums. What forms emerge in the 21st Century? How has technology changed the way we view, perform, and transmit poetry? These are a few of the questions that will be explored over the next thirty days. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

Jack Kerouac School. WRITING THINKING BEING. The experiment continues…

ngohoBorn in the Philippines, Amanda [Ngoho] Reavey was raised between the US and the UK. She is co-editor of Unpublished Narratives, a poetics journal focused on social justice issues, and she recently presented at the Race and Creative Writing conference at the University of Montana. Her work is forthcoming in TAYO Literary Magazine and she blogs at Malinao na isip.

30/30 Poetic Vision: Day Fifteen

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Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets throughout the United States band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

In honor of this month, Naropa’s Jack Kerouac School is launching its second annual 30/30 Poetic Vision, featuring daily experiments by JKS students, staff, and faculty. Our community members were asked to contemplate and engage with text as visual and audio mediums. What forms emerge in the 21st Century? How has technology changed the way we view, perform, and transmit poetry? These are a few of the questions that will be explored over the next thirty days. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

Jack Kerouac School. WRITING THINKING BEING. The experiment continues…

IMG_4943Sara Schultz is a student of psychology and creative writing. She writes poetry, novels, scientific papers and all avenues of innovative nonfiction that hold still long enough to be written upon. She is passionate about health, inquisition, creativity and sharing.

LINEAGE: Women of Naropa 10th Anniversary Reading, April 11, 2014

By Jaclyn Hawkins

“Close your eyes. Breathe deeply . . . feel her breathe lightly next to you . . . find the porch swing.” These incantatory meditations opened the evening, blooming into Women of Naropa, an annual event that reached its ten year anniversary on Friday, April 11th—coinciding with the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics’ fortieth year anniversary. Lark Fox, organizer of this event and JKS alumna, spoke briefly to this “labor of love,” recognizing those integral to this celebration, to these women of Naropa.

This year’s theme was lineage, a toast to where we have been, where we might go, and to connection and creation. Audience members and readers alike were asked to consider “who/what is your writing lineage . . . and how does it interact with your process / act as your muse / become you / repel you / seduce you / time travel / weave you / poke holes into your page?” I ask you, dear reader, to consider this as well. To trace your writerly lineage, discover your poetic genealogy, expose the haunts lingering between your words.

An unforeseen theme: water. Remnants of the Boulder Flood have not yet receded from the collective psyche, as several readers spoke to the element that tracks geological lineage, oceans rising up to meet us, rising waters, creeks choosing where to flow. Hurricane Sandy made her (re)debut, haunting coasts of the dead in dancing waves of detritus.  We found raindrops of language, female hearts in bodies cut open, the discontinuous rupture of story, heard the voice of our mothers—womanhood is manual labor, and were challenged to read like our ancestors are on FIRE.

We read the words of our predecessors—Bobbie Louise Hawkins, Lyn Hejinian, Bhanu Kapil, Joanne Kyger, Rachel Levitsky, Harryette Mullen, Michelle Naka Pierce, Maureen Owen, Andrea Rexilius, Akilah Oliver, and Anne Waldman—in a spontaneous group poem. Echoes of lineage within the walls of Wulsin Hall.

A congratulations is in order, a toast to the tenth anniversary of Women of Naropa. Thank you to all who make this event possible, and to those, past and present, who lend their voices to poetry.

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Jaclyn Hawkins is an MFA candidate at the Jack Kerouac School at Naropa University. On the verge of entering her thesis semester, she is seeking to archive decay through documentary poetry and map the genre of Ecopoetics.

30/30 Poetic Vision: Day Fourteen

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Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets throughout the United States band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

In honor of this month, Naropa’s Jack Kerouac School is launching its second annual 30/30 Poetic Vision, featuring daily experiments by JKS students, staff, and faculty. Our community members were asked to contemplate and engage with text as visual and audio mediums. What forms emerge in the 21st Century? How has technology changed the way we view, perform, and transmit poetry? These are a few of the questions that will be explored over the next thirty days. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

Jack Kerouac School. WRITING THINKING BEING. The experiment continues…

Headshot 2008 IIH.J VandeRiet is a fiction writer drawn to motivation and depth of character and story, whose poetry occasionally makes an appearance when it feels it has something to say. She is an MFA candidate in the Writing & Poetics program with the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University. Her work will appear in Semicolon this spring, and she has been invited to participate with Naropa’s 30/30 Poetic Vision.

30/30 Poetic Vision: Day Thirteen

30 30Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets throughout the United States band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

In honor of this month, Naropa’s Jack Kerouac School is launching its second annual 30/30 Poetic Vision, featuring daily experiments by JKS students, staff, and faculty. Our community members were asked to contemplate and engage with text as visual and audio mediums. What forms emerge in the 21st Century? How has technology changed the way we view, perform, and transmit poetry? These are a few of the questions that will be explored over the next thirty days. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

Jack Kerouac School. WRITING THINKING BEING. The experiment continues…

kd lightKatie Dyer is a poet, teacher and ceramic artist. She earned her MA in Applied Linguistics at Saint Michael’s College in 2008.  Currently, she is enrolled in Naropa’s MFA Creative Writing and Poetics program.  Katie is originally from Vermont, where she spent the last seven years teaching English as a second language in public schools and the Refugee Resettlement Program.  She is wild about food politics, queer theory, and drag performance.

This piece is a collaboration with Katie’s ex-spouse and spirit brother, Dana Kaplan.  The music is used with permission from the band Let’s Whisper.  Let’s Whisper is the sweet bedroom pop duo of Dana Kaplan and Colin Clary.

30/30 Poetic Vision: Day Twelve

30 30Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets throughout the United States band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

In honor of this month, Naropa’s Jack Kerouac School is launching its second annual 30/30 Poetic Vision, featuring daily experiments by JKS students, staff, and faculty. Our community members were asked to contemplate and engage with text as visual and audio mediums. What forms emerge in the 21st Century? How has technology changed the way we view, perform, and transmit poetry? These are a few of the questions that will be explored over the next thirty days. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

Jack Kerouac School. WRITING THINKING BEING. The experiment continues…

mewithAnababyBetty Bricco (formerly published as Elizabeth J. Sparenberg) is a nomadic homebody. A Cuban/Jewish fiction writer originally from Seattle, WA, she has made homes across the country. She is currently living in Florida where she writes speculative fiction and continues her love affair with the ocean. She is looking forward to returning to Boulder to finish her M.F.A. at the Jack Kerouac School, then settling into Front Range living with her family. Right now she is puzzling over the marvel of genetics as she plays with the red-haired baby she created with her dark haired, Latino husband. She is forever grateful for the unwavering love and support of her husband Ricardo, son Robin, and new daughter Anabelle. This, and all of her writing, is dedicated to them.

An Interview with JKS Alumna Rachel Weaver

weaverInterview by Claudia Savage

Rachel Weaver’s  debut novel, Point  of Direction, about a  fearless climber, Anna, and fisherman, Kyle, who fall in love and  attempt to solidify their relationship by becoming caretakers of a  remote lighthouse, is the unlikeliest of love stories. Set against  the rugged landscape of coastal Alaska, Weaver makes you feel the  thick rain, the never-ending wind, the possibility of bears, and then  marries it with multiple mysteries you’ll be desperate to solve. It  is the kind of book you won’t be able to put down except to put  another log on the fire.

Rachel and I met in  a writing class in the late 1990s in Boulder, Colorado, and wrote and  shared work on and off for almost a decade. While we were both  initially poets, Rachel’s time spent in Alaska during the winter  helped her make the transition to fiction. Point of Direction is filled with characters as personable, rugged, and intense as she  is, and you’ll find yourself wanting to have a beer with each and  every one of them. Her tightly crafted sentences and riveting plot  got her noticed by the American Booksellers Association — she is one  of their Indies Introduce Debut Authors picks for Spring 2014. Her  work has appeared in The Gettysburg Review and Blue Mesa  Review. She represented Naropa University, where she received her  MFA, in the Harcourt Brace Best New Voices in American Fiction  contest for 2006, 2007, and 2008.

In this interview,  we talk about Alaskan women, the appeal of physical suffering, and  why Point of Direction is an unusual love story.

Your process for  writing the book was pretty unusual, definitely not the typical  computer at a café or, even, longhand in the living room. How and  where was Point of Direction composed?

I began to write  fiction while I was working seasonally for the Forest Service in  Alaska. I spent years and years wanting to write a novel, but always  felt unsure how to start. Somewhere in the middle of the second  winter I spent in Alaska, I decided I had to do something to escape  the rain and dark and so I finally launched into the world of  fiction. I became addicted. I wrote all the time, huddled up against  my woodstove, or to the loud roar of the generator that provided  power to the cabin I was living in, or at the library where the  electricity was free. In the spring when I started working again for  the Forest Service, I carried a stack of unlined loose paper folded  in half in the top of my backpack. I wrote longhand while I waited  for the floatplane that would drop me off to run bird surveys or in  my tent at night in the diffuse light of the Alaskan summer. I wrote  in dark cabins late at night with a headlamp while working on bear  projects or in tree stands while waiting for the bears to show up.  When I got back to my cabin outside of town, I’d type in all that I’d  written and edit it as I went along. This is still my process –  longhand first and then a full edit as I type it into my computer.

Read the full interview here!