Beloved writer and activist Alice Walker reads from her latest poetry collection, Taking the Arrow out of the Heart. The author of The Color Purple and the first black woman to win both a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and a National Book Award, Walker writes in a way that makes guzzling her words first priority over regular things like breathing and not crying. Despite retiring from writing to study Buddhism and explore the Amazon, she returned to the profession after the September 11 attacks and continues to write about gratitude and self-inquiry.
Broadway Performance Hall
Obtuse Diary by Deborah Woodard
Deborah Woodard, co-curator of the monthly poetry series Margin Shift, author of five books and the translator of many more, teamed up with local press Entre Rios Books to bend old works toward a new gaze. Tonight she takes on the experimental nature of language in her translations of Italian writer and poet Amelia Rosselli. Rosselli, a “poet of exploration,” translated several renowned writers, including Emily Dickinson and Sylvia Plath, before experimenting with her own work and ultimately creating a single collection of prose works called Obtuse Diary.
Open Books Emporium
Gramma Reading Series #2
Local publisher Gramma Press hosts the second in its four-part reading series bringing local and national writers, performers and artists together to make surprises happen. The Stranger’s Kim Selling MCs and reads from her own new work. Other readers include Tyehimba Jess, winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for his visually remarkable collection of poems OLIO; Pushcart Prize recipient and founder of the poetry interview series Divedapper Kaveh Akbar; and Seattle Civic Poet, playwright and teaching artist Anastacia-Renée. The reading will be followed with a cabaret by the dance group AU Collective.
Erickson Theatre Off Broadway
This annual booze-and-books celebration spans 20 different bars, cafes and businesses, packing more than 35 readings into five hours plus time for an afterparty at the new-old Hugo House. Poetry, fiction, theater and even some cooking demonstrations will take place within walking distance of each other. In the past, sessions have been hosted by programs such as Mineral School, Margin Shift, True Stories of #FML and Jack Straw. This year’s lineup was unannounced as of press time but previous readers include Jamaica Baldwin, Gabrielle Bates, Claudia Castro Luna, Robert Lashley, Lindy West and Kristen Millares Young, among others.