Poet, photographer, essayist, activist Margaret Randall to read works

Margaret Randall

Margaret Randall

PORT ANGELES — Margaret Randall — poet, essayist, oral historian, translator, photographer and social activist — will offer a commented poetry reading followed by a conversation with students and community members at 12:30 p.m. April 8.

The free presentation honoring National Poetry Month will kick off Peninsula College’s spring Studium Generale series.

To join the Zoom meeting, go to https://pencol-edu.zoom.us/j/89616075652 and use meeting ID 896 1607 5652.

Randall lived in Latin America for 23 years. From 1962 to 1969, she and Mexican poet Sergio Mondragón co-edited El Corno Emplumado/The Plumed Horn, a bilingual literary quarterly that published new literature and art of the ’60s.

When she returned to the U.S. in 1984, she was ordered deported under the McCarran-Walter Act of 1952, with government officials saying that some of the opinions expressed in her books were “against the good order and happiness of the United States.”

With the support of many writers and others, she won her case in 1989.

Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, she taught at several universities, most often Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.

Randall’s most recent poetry titles include “As If the Empty Chair / Como si la silla vacía,” “The Rhizome as a Field of Broken Bones,” “About Little Charlie Lindbergh,” “She Becomes Time” and “The Morning After: Poems & Prose in a Post-Truth World” (all from Wings Press).

“Che On My Mind,” a feminist poet’s reminiscence of Che Guevara, published by Duke University Press, and “More Than Things,” essays, from The University of Nebraska Press, are other recent titles.

“Haydée Santamaría: She Led by Transgression” was released by Duke in 2015. “Exporting Revolution: Cuba’s Global Solidarity” was published by Duke in 2017. “Time’s Language: Selected Poems: 1959-2018” came out from Wings in the fall of 2018; it covers 60 years of her poetry.

Wings also published her collection of poems written about the COVID-19 experience: “Starfish on a Beach: The Pandemic Poems,” October 2020.

Her memoir, “I Never Left Home: Poet, Feminist, Revolutionary,” was released by Duke in March 2020. And New Village Press published her “My Life in 100 Objects” in September 2020.

Forthcoming in 2021 are several new books: “Out of Violence into Poetry,” “Thinking about Thinking,” and “Artists in My Life.”

She also has devoted herself to translation, producing “When Rains Become Floods” by Lurgio Galván Sánchez, “You Can Cross the Massacre on Foot” by Freddy Prestol Castillo, “Voices from the Center of the World: Contemporary Poets of Ecuador” and “Only the Road / Solo el camino,” an anthology of eight decades of Cuban poetry.

Red Mountain Press in Santa Fe and The Operating System in Brooklyn have brought out her translations of individual Cuban poets. Randall received the 2017 Medalla al Mérito Literario, awarded by Literatura en el Bravo in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.

More recent honors received by Randall include the “Poet of Two Hemispheres” prize, given by Poesía en Paralelo Cero, Quito, Ecuador, in April of 2019 and the Haydée Santamaría Medal, given by Casa de las Américas, Cuba, in May 2019.

In May 2019, the University of New Mexico gave her an honorary doctorate in letters.

In March 2020 AWP named her the year’s recipient of its George Garrett Award.

That same month she was honored with the 2019-2020 Paulo Freire Democratic Project Award by Chapman University’s Donna Ford Attallah College of Education.

Randall lives in Albuquerque, N.M, with her partner (now wife) of more than 34 years, the painter Barbara Byers, and travels extensively to read, lecture and teach.

She is the author of more than 150 books.

For more about her, see www.margaretrandall.org.

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