Stadler Center enlightens campus with poetry and prose

Brianna Marshall, Staff Writer

The Stadler Poetry Center hosted a poetry and prose reading by Ross Gay and Alexander Lumans on Feb. 18 in Bucknell Hall.

Gay is a modern style poet and Lumans is a prose fiction writer. Gay, a 2013 Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, and Lumans, the current University Philip Roth resident, are well-respected authors who are currently promoting new volumes of work.

Gay started the program, describing his poetry as “vividly grounded in love.” Gay read selected poems from “Bringing the Shovel Down,” his 2011 poetry anthology, in addition to new and unpublished pieces. His self-described themes of “evolution” and “love” are demonstrated through a continuous use of rich imagery. Gay draws heavily on personal experiences from everyday life. A Philadelphia-area native, Gay utilizes references to the comforts of his hometown.

Lumans followed with a reading of his short story entitled “Excerpt from the Groom’s Survival Guide,” a reverse chronological tale of what to expect from a wedding day. Leo Tonaki ’14 introduced Lumans, noting that his writing “bends and tweaks the reader’s expectations.” In his opinion, readers must “make the choice of where to start.” This analysis proved accurate as Lumans’ story unfolded with substantial room for interpretation. The conclusion, while satisfying, left the reader with many questions.

Gay and Lumans provided an enlightening evening through new literary perspectives. The Stadler Center is committed to exposing students and the Lewisburg community to the voices of powerful modern writers. The Stadler Center Writers Series continues with the prose writer Peter Ho-Davies on March 4.

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