City Lights Foundation, in partnership with Alta Journal, presents John Freeman in a reading of new work and conversation with Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Forrest Gander. This free event celebrates Freeman’s new collection of poetry, Wind, Trees, published by Copper Canyon Press, and will take place in Jack Kerouac Alley, between City Lights and Vesuvio Cafe in San Francisco. Seating is on a first-come-first-served basis, and face masks are recommended.
About the book:
In Wind, Trees, John Freeman presents a meditation on power and loss, change and adaptation. What can the trees teach us about inhabiting space together? What might we gain if we admit we do not control the wind and cannot possibly carry all we’ve been handed? Offering a stark moral critique of pandemic self-preservation—as “justifications grew / with greed like vines / up the side of a tree / taking everything”—Wind, Trees joins the ranks of politically urgent yet timeless collections like The Lice, by W.S. Merwin. Through narrative lyric and metaphysical pulse, meandering thought and punctuating quiet, Freeman studies the devastating failings of humanity and the redemptive possibilities of love.
About the guests:
John Freeman is the founder of the literary annual Freeman’s and an executive editor at Knopf. His books include How to Read a Novelist and Dictionary of the Undoing as well as a trilogy of anthologies about inequality that he edited, among them Tales of Two Americas: Stories of Inequality in a Divided Nation and Tales of Two Planets, which features dispatches from around the world, where the climate crisis has unfolded at crucially different rates. His poetry collections include Maps and The Park. His work has been translated into more than 20 languages and has appeared in the New Yorker, the Paris Review, Orion, Zyzzyva, and Alta Journal. He is a former editor of Granta and an artist in residence at New York University.
Forrest Gander is a Pulitzer Prize–winning poet, author, translator, and essayist. He is the author of numerous books of poetry, fiction, and essays. Twice Alive is his latest collection of poetry. His translations include the work of Gozo Yoshimasu, Pablo Neruda, Alfonso D’Aquino, and Raúl Zurita. He has received numerous honors for his work, including the Pulitzer Prize for Be With and the Best Translated Book Award, as well as fellowships from the Library of Congress, the Guggenheim Foundation, and United States Artists. He makes his home in Northern California.•