Poet Meg Day to give virtual craft talk, poetry reading

Roger Coda
Dr. Meg Day

Dr. Meg Day

Meg Day, a poet and author of the award-winning “Last Psalm at Sea Level,” will present a craft talk on Wednesday, April 7, and a poetry reading on Thursday, April 8, both at 7 p.m., via Zoom, as part of the Mary Louise White Visiting Writers Series.

An assistant professor of English and Creative Writing at Franklin & Marshall College, Dr. Day identifies as genderqueer and deaf, which both play into their poetry, especially in a series of self portraits in “Last Psalm at Sea Level.”

“We are not static beings,” Day was quoted as saying in an interview. “I think of a self-portrait as trying to find the right title for yourself: what lens can I look through to be sure that I see myself right.”

Day also explores deaf identity, sometimes in poems that feature erasures or redactions. Day’s poems are powerfully image-driven, frequently focused on poetic forms, and in many cases written as both personal testimony and as advocacy, said Department of English Assistant Professor Michael Sheehan.

Day’s work explores identity and the change inherent to it, connection to and distance from others, and interrogates the idea of “a wrong body,” both in terms of disability and gender identity, Mr. Sheehan explained.

As Day shared in another interview, “how could you have a body that is wrong? I can imagine being unhappy with your body, I’ve been there. I can imagine being afraid of your body, I’ve been there. I can imagine wanting your body to change, or be different in many ways. But wrong is such a projection from the culture in a way that I think is so scary and damaging. It implies that others know better than you do about what your body should be.”

For both the craft talk and the reading, Day will be joined by an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter, Emily Phipps, to help ensure accessibility.

Day has a Ph.D. in Literature and Creative Writing, with an emphasis on disability poetics, from the University of Utah, a M.F.A. from Mills College and a B.A. from the University of California, San Diego.

“Last Psalm at Sea Level” won the Barrow Street Press Poetry Prize and the Publishing Triangle’s 2015 Audre Lorde Award. Day is also the author of two award-winning chapbooks: “When All You Have is a Hammer” and “We Can’t Read This.”

The craft talk can be accessed online, and the poetry reading can be accessed online as well.

The Mary Louise White Visiting Writers Series is supported by the Mary Louise White Endowment established through the Fredonia College Foundation.

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