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Samuel Green & Sean McDowell, Disturbing the Light & Learning to Jump

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Fri, 03/01/2024 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Event address: 
Village Books
1200 11th St
Bellingham, WA 98225

Join Village Books in welcoming two celebrated poets, authors, and teachers to the Readings Gallery!


Learning to Jump seeks what sustains us during troubled times. Here are celebrations of making and of things well-made, expressions of gratitude, acts of preservation, and meditations on the befores and afters defining peoples' lives. Only by paying attention can we trust our leaps and the ground we land on.

Through the course of numerous collections of poems, Samuel Green has established his primary poetic preoccupations, and in Disturbing the Light, he continues to mine them, addressing rituals and work in a small, isolated, rural community, the influence of the past on the present (especially in families), and the nature and evolution of a marriage that has spanned five decades. Added to these themes is something new: poems written in response to symptoms of late onset PTSD. Though Green's Coast Guard service in Vietnam ended suddenly in the fall of 1969, memories have returned in the last few years in vivid, disturbing detail, amplified by the haunting knowledge that civilians in Southeast Asia are still, today, suffering death and injury from unexploded ordnance left over from that war. This is a powerful new collection that reminds us that our past is always with us, even as we attend carefully to the present. Disturbing the Light is a masterwork by a poet at the height of his powers. 

Sean McDowell's most recent books include Learning to Jump (2023) and Metaphysical Shadows: The Persistence of Donne, Herbert, Vaughan, and Marvell in Contemporary Poetry (2022). A professor of English and creative writing at Seattle University, he is also the editor of the John Donne Journal: Studies in the Age of Donne.

Samuel Green's many books include The Grace of Necessity (Washington Book Award, 2007), and, most recently, Disturbing the Light (2020). He has received Poetry Fellowships from the NEA and Washington's Artist Trust, an honorary Doctorate from Seattle University, and served as Washington's Inaugural Poet Laureate.

Disturbing the Light (Carnegie Mellon University Press Poetry Series ) By Samuel Green Cover Image
ISBN: 9780887486609
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Carnegie Mellon University Press - November 7th, 2020