Nude Descending An Empire (Book Release Party) + Blackfire

Published Robbie - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 1:31pm

This is a book release party, featuring acclaimed poet Sam Taylor—who will read from his scintillating and explosive new book, NUDE DESCENDING AN EMPIRE—and special guest Blackfire, who will rock out with Eastern European and Klezmer Jams. Also, wine will be served.

While you may have previously concluded that poetry readings are not always the liveliest affair, this event promises to change all that. Sam Taylor is the real deal, and Nude Descending an Empire is a collection of immediately accessible poems that dynamically engage with the political and ecological urgency of our contemporary moment. Taylor's politically radical second collection follows his more mystically inclined first, Body of the World, a finalist for Foreword Reviews Book of the Year. Taylor spent years living as a caretaker for a remote wilderness refuge, without phone, electricity, or internet, an experience that partly inspired this book. He currently teaches as an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing, and his work was recently honored with the coveted Amy Lowell Poetry Traveling Scholarship, which will support him to travel the world for a year.

You can sample his work at <>. And, listen to what others are saying!

“Once in a while a book appears that seems forged from the truth. This is one. The poems . . . take head-on the end of nature, for one thing, and the significance of human life in a world changing so perilously fast that it’s barely recognizable from one moment to the next.” — Chase Twichell

“Sam Taylor’s Nude Descending an Empire is a book that has large ambitions—and overwhelmingly succeeds at all of them. The voice here works at so many dimensions: spiritual, political, erotic, sensually worldly and quietly lyrical—and probably a dozen more! Few poets are able to write well in just one or two of these realms. That Taylor can do so much—he marries Frank O’Hara and Merwin, Whitman and Dante, your latest local radio report and science fiction!—is amazing in and of itself. And, then, when you take a breath and sit down hard reading this book, his gift at incantatory syntax takes this amazement to a wholly different level—you stand up, you read these poems aloud. I love the many lives of this book: his life as Sioux, Jew, a Christian peasant, and many others. I love how he curses and praises and sexes in the same poem, often in the same moment. Sam Taylor is a poet to reckon with, a poet to live with, a poet to marvel at. This is a wonderful book.”—Ilya Kaminsky

“Bountifully true to both the exploration of intimacy and sexuality implied by Nude AND to the unpacking of the public and political implied by Empire, Sam Taylor's new book is a wonder, by turns riding the crest of our immediate American nano-moment and channeling the vatic voice of ancient wisdom. These are poems for the long haul: they replenish us.” --Albert Goldbarth

“Nude Descending an Empire is a stunning book, in all the varied shades of ‘stun.’ The nude descending an empire enacts an apocalyptic prophecy where the earth’s inhabitants are scampering about barefoot and naked sheltering in the shades of the towers they had competed to build. But Sam Taylor is too astute a poet to only horrify us with the facts, with the impending damage. His voice is elegiac for all of us, for life on this planet, and his ironic sleights of hands point to the end of irony, apathy, or whatever we call the unconscionable ways that have sustained our consumption and violence. I know that when it comes to reciting and composing the psalms of our age, Taylor is the one I want to lead us in prayer.”—Khaled Mattawa

Please join us!

Free, donations appreciated
Sat, 07/26/2014 - 6:00pm
Free, donations appreciated