Sunday, July 11, 2010

Still Time to See Kathleen Kirk Reading from Living on the Earth Today at Heartland Theatre!

I don’t know whether to blame jet lag or general discombobulation from being in a different time zone all week, but somehow I have failed to preview Kathleen Kirk’s poetry reading at Heartland Theatre at 2 pm this afternoon.

But if you work quickly there is still just enough time to put on your best poetry-appreciation attire (Purple poetry pumps? Pink poetic parka?) and head over to Heartland, where Kathleen will be performing poems from her newest chapbook, Living on the Earth, published by Finishing Line Press. Admission is free, and you can buy a copy of Living on the Earth at the reading, or get an autograph from Kathleen if you already have a copy of the chapbook.

Kathleen shared this information about Living on the Earth with us back in February:

“This is a book, quite simply, about ‘living on the earth’ in some pretty basic ways: standing and walking with the earth’s gravity, eating what grows on the earth and even cultivating our food, living among the beauties of nature, living with earth’s various creatures, living with other humans, and living with our own struggles and imperfections.

“Sometimes it even means living with alienation—there’s a poem called ‘Living on the Moon’ in which I imagine literally living on the moon as a way of expressing the feeling of being alienated from fellow citizens of earth. There’s another called ‘Resurrection on the 4th of July’ in which I imagine I have come back to life (like a lady Lazarus) from some period of deathlike estrangement.

“But most of the poems are set in nature or my own backyard, observing the gently cultivated nature of gardens, say, or a spider interacting with a water bottle or a laundry basket. In another poem I encounter a coyote in the parking lot of a swimming pool in my own hometown; he’s hungry enough to come into town for pigeon roadkill. What does that say about 21st-century American life? In this book I look at cornfields and wildflowers, I listen to women and crickets singing, and sometimes I become things other than myself.”

The book is also available at Babbitt’s Books in Normal, if you are unable to make the signing, or online at Her previous chapbook, Broken Sonnets, is also at Amazon. Babbitt’s also carries Kathleen’s first poetry chapbook, Selected Roles, which contains theatre and persona poems and references to Heartland Theatres in its “program notes.”

Sample Poem:

Blind Gentian

I was ready to open: dew hung from my leaves.
I was like all the others
in a wet thicket beside the tall trees.
A boy asked me why I didn’t kiss him—
so I did, his lips soft as petals, closed.

I waited.

You are waiting now for what will happen
next. I cannot tell you. I wait, still.
I have spread into the damp meadow now,
toward the ragged creek. The meek, the meek,
I pray daily, bare toes digging in


  1. Thank you, Julie. I look forward to seeing you there in your purple pumps!

  2. Sorry to be so tardy! My brain has been disengaged all week.

    I will see you in a few minutes!