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Fred Moten in conversation with Garrett Caples

May 16 @ 6:00 pm

City Lights together with Wave Books celebrate the publication of perennial fashion presence falling – By Fred Moten – published by Wave Books

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Fred Moten in conversation with Garrett Caples

celebrating the publication of

perennial fashion presence falling

By Fred Moten

published by Wave Books

“…some ekphrastic evening, this’ll be both criticism and poetry and failing that fall somewhere that seems like in between.”



So writes poet, critic, theorist, and MacArthur fellow Fred Moten in his latest poetry collection perennial fashion presence falling. Much like the poems found in The Feel Trio (Letter Machine 2014), which was a National Book Award finalist, and All That Beauty (Letter Machine, 2019), the poems here present Moten’s “shaped prose” on the page and the dizzying brilliance of both polyphonies and paronomasia. Within this collection, the poems hold an innate quantum curiosity about the infinitude of the present and the ways in which one could observe the history of the future. Poems beget poems, overflowing and flowering, urging deeper etymological investigations. In perennial fashion presence falling, Moten approaches the sublime, relishing that intermediary space of microtonal thought.

Fred Moten works in the Departments of Performance Studies and Comparative Literature at New York University. He is concerned with social movement, aesthetic experiment and black study and has written a number of books of poetry and criticism, the latest of which, written with Stefano Harney, is All Incomplete (Minor Compositions/Autonomedia, 2021). In addition to his long-term collaboration with Harney, Moten is engaged in ongoing work with critic Laura Harris, artist Wu Tsang and musicians Gerald Cleaver and Brandon López. Moten is a MacArthur Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Garrett Caples is the poetry editor at City Lights and the curator of the Spotlight Poetry Series. He is also an acclaimed poet in his own right and has had numerous books published. Wave Books published his most recent book titled Lovers of Today.

This event is made possible by support from the City Lights Foundation. To learn more visit: https://citylights.com/foundation/