September 23, 2018

Joel Bettridge, Tom Fisher,
& Jamondria Marnice Harris


Friday, October 26
7:00 pm

1223 NE ML King Blvd.
503-388-7665

$5 suggested donation; no one turned away

Jamondria Harris is a poet & multimedia artist living in Portland, OR. They use words, sounds, wires, instruments, textiles & what falls into their hands to engage with blackness, desire, spirit/source, decolonization, fairy tales, femme supremacy, & body horror. They are a VONA Workshop Fellow and an artist-in-residence at S1 Gallery, among other things. Their book of poetry and art, quaerere, is available from Magic Helicopter Press and their music can be found at meroitic.bandcamp.com .

Tom Fisher is the author of Convivium (Publication Studio), Writing Not Writing (University of Iowa Press), and Sorsere (The Cultural Society). He lives in Portland and teaches at Portland State.

Joel Bettridge is the author of three books of poetry, That Abrupt Here(The Cultural Society 2007), Presocratic Blues (Chax 2009), and The Public Life of Chemistry(The Cultural Society 2018), as well two critical studies, Avant-Garde Pieties: Aesthetics, Race, and the Renewal of Innovative Poetics (Routledge 2018) and Reading as Belief: Language Writing, Poetics, Faith (Palgrave 2009).He co-edited, with Eric Selinger, Ronald Johnson: Life and Works(The National Poetry Foundation 2008). Currently he is an Associate Professor of English at Portland State University.

****

a segment from 'quaerere' :



is lovingly held. is lovingly held

in whatever marks me. is lovingly

held no matter how many arms

 are taken into the body. is lovingly held

no matter how much black blood gets into

 discrete flesh. is lovingly held while being

split to facilitate. is lovingly held when no

whole is possible from what is left. is lovingly

held to the memory of the living. is lovingly held

by what can grow when a body

is fed upon. is lovingly held in making and

meets no end.


Jamondria Harris



Norton

 

I was finishing a sandwich

and reading a book. I heard a voice

from over my shoulder. This is

what is possible, I thought.

 

As you took another name you

wrote along the edge of story. I-

t was hard to follow, the twists and

 

turns of how you plotted an

almost unreadable narrative of witch,

person and boundary.

 

What little I know is always put

into question. This is the conditional

life of the zero stone,

                                   

                                    the swamp dweller,

                                    the poison fruit, the

                                    dead companion

 

in cross-time.

Tom Fisher


The ghost in the machine

is a real ghost,

a symbol using contrivance

constrained by a tendency toward riot for reasons we don't

         quite understand;

 

set this knowledge beside the image of Filippo Tommaso

         Marinetti

throwing himself under tires to get closer to them

 

Benjamin Franklin drawing fire from the clouds,

his little anecdotes of our ancestors

 

the shared ecstasy of a checklist.

 

Taken together, the sureness that

there is only the ground--unconsolidated products of rock erosion

         and organic decay; what

 

waits in the Fear of the Innermost Body

Within the Body that We Call the Heart--no earth packed down

         at all:

 

let's expend ourselves like shell casings, make

 

us into mechanisms to contort our mouths to suck up all the

         wind--at last signifying

monkeys in the Garden; enlivened gears and wires to make up

         paradise.


Joel Bettridge