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On Poetry 

Wednesday, Mar 3 2010
The poet Lorine Niedecker lived in out-of-the-way rural Wisconsin, but was widely recognized and embraced by contemporaries such as William Carlos Williams. An unsentimental modernist and gifted observer of nature, her star didn’t exactly fade after her death in 1970. Yet there’s little doubt that University of California Press’ 2002 tome, Lorine Niedecker: Collected Works, introduced her to a new generation. Fellow Wisconsinite Cathy Cook’s meditative new film should spread the poet’s gospel even further. Immortal Cupboard: In Search of Lorine Niedecker weaves its subject’s poems, letters, and a rare, long-ago audio interview with evocative nature shots and re-enactments into a transporting mood piece. An amalgam of documentary, biography, and experimental film, Immortal Cupboard took six years to handcraft. (But don’t expect an overdose of preciousness from a filmmaker who named her dog Sprocket.) Based in Baltimore, where she teaches in the Visual Arts department at the University of Maryland after a decade as an art director in Manhattan’s film and TV biz, Cook makes a pilgrimage to the West Coast to present her film and tout its inspiration. “In Search of Lorine Niedecker: Film and Talk” also features poet and editor Jonathan Skinner of the journal Ecopoetics, who treks from Maine to give his lecture, "Particular Attention: Lorine Niedecker's Natural Histories.”
Fri., March 12, 8 p.m., 2010

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Michael Fox


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