Celebrate Poetry Month

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Submitted by: 

Maggie Shirley

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Poet Jane Byers

Join the Kootenay Gallery in celebrating National Poetry Month with an evening of readings by two Kootenay poets. Jane Byers will be reading from her new book Acquired Community and Emily Nilsen has just launched her first book, Otolith. The event, titled Passages of Time, will be held on Thursday, April 27, 7 pm at the Kootenay Gallery of Art, 120 Heritage Way in Castlegar.

Jane Byers’ Acquired Community is both a collection of narrative poems about seminal moments in North American lesbian and gay history, mostly post-World War II and a series of first person poems that act as a touchstone to compare the narrator’s coming out experience within the larger context of the gay liberation movement. In this second book by Byers her poems go beyond the historical perspective of LGBT rights and are living examples of progress. Acquired Community examines and celebrates community resilience.

Otolith – the ear stone – is a series of bones that help us to orient ourselves in space. In Otolith, Emily Nilsen attempts a similar feat in poetry: to turn the reader’s attention to their relationship to the world, revealing an intertidal state between the rootedness of place and the uncertainty and tenuousness of human connection. Born in the fecundity of British Columbia’s coastal rainforest, these poems are full of life and decay; they carry the odours of salmon rivers and forests of fir; salal growing in the fog bound mountain slopes.

Everyone is welcome to attend this reading. The event is free but donations to the Gallery are gratefully accepted. Both authors will have copies of their books available for purchase and signing.