Sponsored by the Book Club of Washington
All are welcome at the BCW Annual Meeting. We transact a little business, including making awards to students, and enjoy a special presentation that is the inspiration for a related keepsake. This year our featured speaker is distinguished poet Dr. Sharon Cumberland.
About the Presentation
In Dr. Cumberland’s latest book, published last year, she has created poems in her father’s voice that are based on, and quote from, his extensive correspondence, some of which is reproduced in the book. Found in a Letter 1959: A Memoir in Poems is a unique creative response to the content of letters that her father wrote to his father every day for six months in 1959. In that period, Sharon’s grandfather was hospitalized with cancer in Washington, D.C., and her father was a Sloan Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston, representing the Navy. Sharon will talk about how she translated the details of daily life described in the letters into poems.
About the Speaker (transcribed from the book)
Sharon Cumberland is Professor Emeritus of English at Seattle University, where she directed the Creative Writing Program and taught poetry writing and American literature. She has published scholarly work in orality and literacy studies, new media, and fan fiction. She spent her first sabbatical year in the Media Studies Program at M.I.T. Her chapbooks are The Arithmetic of Mourning from Green Rock Press, Sharon Cumberland Greatest Hits from Pudding House Publications and, with Denis Caswell, CCausmwbeelrlland, from Floating Bridge Press. Her poetry books are Peculiar Honors and Strange with Age, both from Black Heron Press. Her poems have been widely published, and she has won many awards and residencies. She lives in Shoreline, Washington, with her husband, the scholar, editor, and letterpress printer James T. Jones.