Ishion Hutchinson and Valzhyna Mort
Alice Yard is currently hosting its first two writers in residence, both poets: Ishion Hutchinson of Jamaica and Valzhyna Mort of Belarus. They are also the first residents of our new Habitat space, intended to host visiting artists, writers, musicians, and other creative practitioners interested in living and working in Port of Spain and interacting with Alice Yard’s creative network.
On Wednesday 6 January, at 7.00 pm, Hutchinson and Mort will read from their recent work at Alice Yard, and engage in a conversation about questions which their separate bodies of work address from different directions: language, translation, home, abroad, and personal and national history.
All are invited.
About the writers:
Ishion Hutchinson was born in 1983 in Port Antonio, Jamaica. He has an MFA from New York University and is currently researching his doctoral dissertation at the University of Utah. He has read at the Calabash International Literary Festival in Jamaica and participated in the Cropper Foundation Caribbean Writers’ Workshop. In 2005 his chapbook Bryan’s Bay appeared in the Calabash Chapbook Series, and his first full-length book of poems will appear in 2010.
Valzhyna Mort was born in 1981 in Minsk, Belarus. Her first book, I’m As Thin as Your Eyelashes (2005), was a collection of poetry, prose, and selected translations from Polish and English. Since 2006 she has lived in the United States, where she is a writer in residence at the University of Baltimore. She has also been a writer in residence at the Literarisches Colloquium Berlin and Sylt-Quelle in Germany and at the International Authors’ House in Graz, Austria. Her second book of poems, Factory of Tears, translated by Mort in collaboration with Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Franz Wright and Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright, appeared in 2008.
I took my name from the aftersky
of a Mesopotamian flood,
birdless as if culture had shed its wings
into a ground vulture on the plain....
— from “A Surveyor’s Journal”, by Ishion Hutchinson
even our mothers have no idea how we were born
how we parted their legs and crawled out into the world
the way you crawl from the ruins after a bombing....
— from “Belarusian 1”, by Valzhyna Mort
The reading is co-hosted by Town.