Rhetorical happenings (PoemTalk #181)

Hoa Nguyen, 'Long Light'

From left: Bethany Swann, Jonathan Dick, Kate Colby.


Al Filreis convened Bethany Swann, Jonathan Dick, and Kate Colby to talk about a poem by Hoa Nguyen titled “Long Light.” The poem has been collected in Red Juice: Poems, 1998–2008 (150), published by Wave Books. Our recording of the poem comes from Hoa’s PennSound author page. The recording we used is from a reading presented as part of the St. Bonaveture Visiting Poets Series, on March 22, 2016.

This episode of PoemTalk was recorded before a live audience in the Arts Café of the Kelly Writers House. It was livestreamed as well, and the recording of the livestream has been preserved — available at the Kelly Writers House YouTube channel and is also available here, below.

The episode was directed and engineered by Zach Carduner, with camerawork performed by Paul Burke. Zach, as always, was the editor.


Long light      Super Bowl Sunday 2006
“Do” to escape from the present
lying on a recycled-plastic outdoor-carpet
near profuse clover and the water meter

In the dream Heather
marries a heart surgeon in heaven

We need to empty the ash from our chiminea

Peely bark on the sycamore tree      waxing
gibbous moon

There are rhetorical happenings (written directly
onto a flower)

Can love