Please join Triple Canopy for readings by poets Aisha Sasha John and Gwen Muren, and a conversation about the social lives of poems and their movements and transformations on and off the page, from page to screen and vice versa, and into speech.
We come to The Point of the Meeting with familiar questions: What are the poet’s materials? How does a poem look (or sound)? Who or what is speaking, and to whom? Yet the objects of our investigation are new. Muren’s recent contribution to Triple Canopy’s Pointing Machines issue, “The Twinning Room,” is a series of poems that incorporate texts about and drawn from the body: biometric data, medical reports, love letters. They form a “collected lungg,” a “placental daydream.” Muren's poems offer multiple points of entry; they demand to be looked at, read, and performed. Similarly, John’s work investigates the body’s maneuvers and encounters—with other bodies, with objects—in space and time. As John writes, “Things matter and/thank God.” Muren and John’s respective engagements with the body also find expression beyond their writing practices: Muren is a multidisciplinary performance artist and John is a dancer.
Muren is the author of Glitch (2014), published by Crater Press. John is the author of The Shining Material (2011) and, most recently, THOU (2014), two long narrative poems that explore the social space constructed by the word “you.” A selection of poems from John’s forthcoming collection will be published in Vanitas, an upcoming issue of Triple Canopy. The Point of the Meeting will include readings by both poets and a conversation between them, moderated by Triple Canopy associate editor Emily Wang.
- Aisha Sasha John is a dancer and poet. The author of The Shining Material (BookThug 2011) and the Trillium and ReLit Award nominated THOU (BookThug 2014), Aisha’s poetry has brought her to Kelowna, Marrakech, Montreal, New York, Oakland, San Francisco, and Vancouver. In 2014, Aisha participated in A Rhythm Party, a Princeton University colloquium marrying poetry and hospitality. In 2013, she was a UNESCO-Aschberg laureate artist, attending Dar Al-Ma’mûn in Morocco. She’s presented talks at numerous art institutions in Toronto including the Art Gallery of Ontario, Mercer Union, and the Power Plant. In January 2016, Aisha’s collaboration with Julia Thomas, WE ARE HANGING OUT RIGHT NOW, premiered at Videofag in Toronto. Her third collection of poems, I have to live. will be published by McClelland and Stewart in 2017. Alongside Walter Scott and Rachelle Sawatsky, Aisha’s work will be included in an exhibit curated by cheyanne turions called How a Living Day is Made at the Doris McCarthy Gallery (UTSC) April 21–June 11, 2016.
- Gwen Muren is the author of Glitch from Crater Press. She lives in Philadelphia and New York.