Brother Antoninus Reading

From William Everson: The Life of Brother Antoninus.

None of these performances was ever quite the same, though all followed a similar pattern. Antoninus titled his reading/talk "Poetry and the Life of the Spirit" because, as he wrote one program director in 1961, "although I do read poems the discourse between the poems is usually not about the poetry but about the general problems of the spiritual and moral life as all men confront it, related to as wide an audience level as I can make it to avoid literary aestheticism on the one hand or religious sectarianism on the other." He would begin with "A Canticle to the Waterbirds," then "start free associations, delving down into the roots of the mind for spontaneous correlations, groping out into unexplored areas, trying to find the creative areas within myself, probe the unknown, find new leaders and terminals, cross-references, intuitions, smokey conjectures, etc. To risk. To suffer exposure, find the cross, the moment of agonized realization. And in the end, to be." And it was primarily for this reason, that these performances were as much intense excursions into the dark well of his pysche, that the poet was forced to allow at least a few days, if not a full week, between each event.,5150855

Thanks to Ted Dunn.



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