Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Poet Carol Lem in La Canada Flintridge July 10

On Sunday, July 10, from 3 – 5 P.M., Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse hosts a reading and book signing for poet Carol Lem. Lem will ready from Gathering the Pieces and Shadow of the Plum. Also available is a CD of her reading a selection from the latter book, accompanied on the shakuhachi (bamboo flute) with original music by Masakazu Yoshizawa. Lem is also a student of the shakuhachi.

Carol Lem lives in Sierra Madre and teaches creative writing and literature at East Los Angeles College. Her poems in Gathering the Pieces have been described by Christopher Buckley as ”remarkable for their quiet insight and humility, for their keen attention to and transformation of the small details of a life.” And, Gary Soto said of Shadow of the Plum, “Are her poems modest? No. They are as strong as bamboo, bendable in our minds. Carol displays an affection for family, poets, students, and her dead lover that is vivid, honest, and memorable.”

Excerpt from the poem “Shakuhachi and the Alhambra” (Gathering the Pieces):

Maybe it was the folds

of night and white noise,

the glowing Alhambra

on the next hill that made

the moment right.

I slipped my shakuhachi

from its warm case

and rubbed the dark bamboo.

while those, loosely

collected, talked and drank,

I propped myself on the ledge

of Mirador de San Nicolas,

crossed my legs, and blew

my first sound over the steep

cliff to the gardens of Spain.

Lem comments that she is driven by “the ongoing quest to complete the pieces of a puzzle through the writing of poetry, a craft that will always discover another piece missing.” She is also the author of Searching, Grassroots, Don’t Ask Why, The Hermit, The Hermit’s Journey: Tarot Poems for Meditation, and Moe (Remembrance).

For more information about the Carol Lem’s reading, call (818) 790-0717. Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse is located at 1010 Foothill Blvd., La Canada Flintridge CA 91011, at the intersection of Foothill Blvd. and the Angeles Crest Highway. Take the Angeles Crest exit off the 210, turn south, make a right onto Foothill Blvd., and turn left onto Chevy Chase. Parking is in the rear of the store.

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