In celebration of National Poetry Month, Island Books is delighted to welcome Peter Ludwin and Megan Snyder-Camp to our store on Tuesday, April 18th. Both remarkable authors have embarked on a unique poetic exploration of the past, contemplating the effects Northwest history has on the region and the self.
In Gone to Gold Mountain, poet Peter Ludwin brings to life the little-known story of Chea Po and his fellow Chinese gold miners, massacred in 1887 by Eastern Oregon pioneers. Ludwin embodies Chea Po and his experiences of breathtaking racism, homesickness, and dislocation. He imbues these persona poems, letters, and laments with the finely-drawn landscapes of Hells Canyon and China, glowing lanterns, and an eagle circling the canyon rim. Chea Po seems to have haunted Ludwin until finally, here, his life and death are told justly. --Kathleen Flenniken
With found text from the journals of Meriwether Lewis and George Clark, observations from her own travels overlain upon their journeys at the mouth of the Columbia River, and acute awareness of what was overwritten and wrongly seen in their historic voyage, Megan Snyder-Camp braids a remarkable investigation in Wintering … From Oregon to Monticello, from PlayLand crawled by kids to microfilm-speeding librarians, Snyder-Camp backwards-traces what has been left to us as simplified legend and restores its necessary complexity with lyric power. –Liz Bradfield