Author News and Book Reports
Robert Bly challenges students to 'shoot the TV' and 'double the madness'
Internationally acclaimed author/poet and father of what he has called 'the expressive men's movement,' Robert Bly visited the University of New Hampshire where he was introduced to a standing room only audience by Pulitzer Prize winning poet and University of New Hampshire professor Charles Simic. With the special brand of wit for which he is famous, mixing storytelling with political, social and literary commentary between readings of poems, Bly read a wide range of poems, beginning with the 14th century Indian mystic Kabir, followed by a poem called Conversation with a Mouse in honor of Charles Simic's often zany poems, and a poem from a Russian point of view. From his newest book, The Night Abraham Called to the Stars (Perennial, 2002), weaving the poems into a discourse on Islamic poetry sprinkled with personal stories and wisecracks, Bly read Forgetting the Mailman, The Way the Parrot Learns, and poems about separation and listening, while urging the audience to shoot their televisions and 'double the madness.' Bly also read Amen and several new poems, including his first anti-Iraq War poem, published in The Nation (August, 2002), called Call and Answer, as well as The Blinding of Samson and It's Already Too Late.