Maggie Smith reads from her latest collection of Poetry, Good Bones (Tupelo Press, 2017)
Friday, January 19th, 2018, 7 p.m.
Back Patio, Piper Writers House
450 E Tyler Mall, Tempe, AZ 85281
Open to the public and free
To learn more about Maggie's reading and RSVP, visit piper.asu.edu/events/2018/a-reading-with-maggie-smith
An informal q&a and book signing will follow the reading. Please note this is an outdoor reading. Heaters and warm beverages will be provided. Guests are advised to dress appropriately. Seating is first-come, first-serve: you do not need a ticket to attend the event, tickets simply function as RSVPs and do not guarantee seating. Significant standing room and overflow can be accommodated.
About the Book
The title poem of Good Bones went viral internationally after the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, and the murder of MP Jo Cox in England. To date the poem has touched more than a million readers and has been translated into nearly a dozen languages, including Spanish, French, Italian, German, Bengali, Korean, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, and Malayalam. It was called the “Official Poem of 2016” by Public Radio International, but the poem has continued to be shared widely around the world in these tumultuous times. In April 2017 “Good Bones” was featured on the CBS primetime drama Madam Secretary—in an episode also called “Good Bones”—and Meryl Streep read the poem at the 2017 Academy of American Poets gala at Lincoln Center. The Telegraph (London) wrote that the poem is “a beautiful elegy for an imperfect world marked by tragedy, exploring the difficulty of finding positivity in the face of suffering…. The poem is a call for us all to improve the world, even if it might just this moment seem beyond repair.”
Good Bones is Maggie Smith’s most intimate and direct book yet. Smith writes out of the experience of motherhood, inspired by watching her own children read the world like a book they’ve just opened, knowing nothing of the characters or plot. These are poems that have a sense of moral gravitas and personal urgency, poems that stare down darkness while cultivating and sustaining possibility. Ada Limón writes, “Truthful, tender, and unafraid of the dark, the poems in Good Bones are lyrically charged love letters to a world in desperate need of her generous eye.”
About the Author
Maggie Smith is the author of three books of poetry: Good Bones (Tupelo Press, Fall 2017); The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison (Tupelo Press, 2015); and Lamp of the Body (Red Hen Press, 2005). Lamp of the Body won the 2003 Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press. The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison won the 2012 Dorset Prize, selected by Kimiko Hahn, and the 2016 Gold Medal in Poetry for the Independent Publishers Book Awards.
About the Piper Center
Smith’s reading is presented as part of the Distinguished Visting Writer Series by the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at Arizona State University, a non-academic university center dedicated to serving writers, readers, and the larger community through a variety of literary events and programs. For more information, visit piper.asu.edu.