These are one poet’s personal and quirky picks for events for the AWP conference in Chicago in 2012. I’ve highlighted presenters I’ve seen in the past or topics that seem interesting to me.
9:00–10:15 AM. Lorenzo Thomas’s Extraordinary Poetics. Lorenzo Thomas’s many contributions to literature have not been sufficiently acknowledged since his untimely passing in 2005. He was an important poet and translator. High time for this panel. Private Dining Room 2, Hilton Chicago.
9:00–10:15 AM. A Poetry Congeries Reading. David St. John, Camille Dungy and more. Sounds like a major new literary venture. State Ballroom, Palmer House Hilton.
Noon–1:15 PM. A Call to Arms, Imagining a Better World: Celebrating the Long Tradition of Chicago Activist Writers. This panel includes the well-known activist Bill Ayers. Great topic. I hope they include Edgar Lee Masters, a fave of mine. State Ballroom, Palmer House Hilton.
1:30–2:45 PM. Staged reading of my play, Things I Didn’t Know I Loved, about the Turkish writer Nazim Hikmet, performed by Chicago’s Caffeine Theatre. Wiliford A, Hilton Chicago.
3:00–4:15PM. Men from Venus, Women from Mars: Writing from the Perspective of the Opposite Sex. Another great topic. State Ballroom, Palmer House Hilton.
4:30–5:45 PM. Literature and Evil. Great topic, great panel, including Marilynne Robinson and Ha Jin. Don’t miss this. Grand Ballroom, Hilton Chicago.
4:30–5:45 PM. Ear Candy: Teaching the Pleasures of Poetic Meter. A topic that poets should talk more about, and maybe even know more about. Continental B. Hilton Chicago.
4:30–5:45 PM. Poetry Reading: Pitt Poetry Series. Strong line-up, including Toi Derricotte and David Wojahn. Worthwhile. International Ballroom South, Hilton Chicago.
4:30–5:45 PM. Homage to Edouard Glissant. Fine Caribbean fiction writer who wrote in French, deserves to be better known in U.S. Lake Michigan, Hilton Chicago.
Zack Rogow’s play, Things I Didn’t Know I Loved, about the Turkish writer Nazim Hikmet, will be given a staged reading at AWP on Saturday, March 3 from 1:30 to 2:45 p.m. in room Wiliford A, Hilton Chicago, 3rd floor.