Margaret Lloyd & Sarah Browning

Thursday, May 6, 2010, at 7:00 pm, poets Margaret Lloyd and Sarah Browning will read work from their books as well as new poems. ($2-5 sliding scale.)

*Please note our new starting time.

Margaret Lloyd

Margaret Lloyd’s first poetry collection, This Particular Earthly Scene, was published by Alice James Books and in 2008 Plinth Books published A Moment in the Field: Voices from Arthurian Legend. She has also published a book-length critical study of William Carlos Williams’ poem Paterson (Fairleigh Dickinson University Press). She received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities for the creation of critical editions and translations of poems written by a medieval Welsh woman. She was the Margaret Bridgman Fellow in Poetry at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, received the Vachel Lindsay Poetry Award for the best poem published in Willow Springs, and a fellowship to Hawthornden Castle, an International Retreat for Writers in Scotland where she completed her most recent poetry collection. In 2008, she was granted a writing residency at Yaddo where she worked on her forthcoming third book of poems, The Cows of Heaven. She has poem/painting pairs forthcoming in Poetry Wales and Planet: The Welsh Internationalist. Lloyd chairs the Humanities Department at Springfield College, Massachusetts.

Sarah Browning

Sarah Browning is the author of Whiskey in the Garden of Eden (The Word Works, 2007) and co-editor of D.C. Poets Against the War: An Anthology (Argonne House Press, 2004). She is co-director of Split This Rock Poetry Festival: Poems of Provocation & Witness and DC Poets Against the War. The recipient of an artist fellowship from the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities, she has also received a Creative Communities Initiative grant and the People Before Profits Poetry Prize. She was founding director of Amherst Writers & Artists Institute — creative writing workshops for low-income women and youth — and Assistant Director of The Fund for Women Artists, an organization supporting socially-engaged art by women. She co-hosts the Sunday Kind of Love reading series at Busboys and Poets in Washington, DC, where she lives with her husband and son.

*

LAST KISS by Margaret Lloyd

I had to faint three times
I had to be lifted up three times
when I saw him walking
through the air between us.
Nothing kept him from me—
not iron bars or bloody hands,
not my cruelty, not his love for God.
I demanded from him more
than I demanded of the king
and he accomplished it.
After the great wars,
after Arthur’s death,
for eight days he rode west
finding me in the abbey
walking in the cloisters with the sisters.
I had to faint three times
I had to be lifted up three times
when I saw him moving
through the air between us.
Though I wanted, like Gawain,
to choose the wound I would die of,
when he asked for one last kiss,
I said no. I said no,
not looking at his eyes,
not looking at his mouth,
but instead at a scar on his cheek.
And again I said no,
sending him into the forest
knowing this time
there was no coming back.
I had to faint three times
I had to be lifted up.

(By permission of Plinth Books. All rights reserved.)

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