MillerComm Lecture Series

Poetic Reflections on Caribbean Culture and History: A Reading

Tuesday, March 4th, 1997
Lorna Goodison

Room 407, Levis Faculty Center

919 West Illinois Street, Urbana

Event Description

"Lorna Goodison's new collection is a rooted, organic delight, true in its intonations to the Jamaican language she loves, fresh in its wit and pain and in the high, spiritual gossip of its leaves." – Derek Walcott

Speak of the Advent of New Light

On a night of no stars it will spark
from the friction of a homeless woman's shoe
slipping along the pavement as she stoops
to stir her evening meal of trickledown
in a paintcan over a fire of damp rubbish.

Simultaneously it will glow phosphorescent
in the cupped hands of a night fisherman
as he bends to test the waters off the bay
near surrender, the wonder of the living water
bearing footprints and currents of fresh beginnings.

And small children will come in from play
pulling like kites behind them luminous
streamers of light, infused with such colors
as never the prism of the eye has reflected.
New light succeeding dark is certain, is expected.

From To Us, All Flowers Are Roses (UI Press, 1995)

Cosponsored by: Office of the Chancellor, Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and the Graduate College, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, The Council of Deans, The Center for Advanced Study, George A. Miller Endowment, George A. Miller Committee, Peggy Harris Memorial Fund, Department of English, Afro-American Studies and Research Program, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, International Programs and Studies, Program for the Study of Cultural Values and Ethics, Unit One/Allen Hall, University of Illinois Press, Women's Studies Program

Lorna Goodison

Author, poet, and visual artist, Jamaica