Tonight I went to an MFA poetry reading by Carol Muske Dukes and thoroughly enjoyed myself. I remember going to an MFA reading back in sophomore year and thinking how bored I was the entire time. But tonight was exceptionally good.
Carol Muske Dukes' late husband is the actor David Coleman Dukes and her dedication to him is displayed so vividly through her poetry in her recent book, Sparrow. I thought that she was going to write some morbid/depressing poems that were quite literally cliche, but her manner of writing about her late husband was so private and incredibly well versed. She said over and over again during her reading that she tried to tap multiple ways of expressing her sorrow and was trying to get over the grief in her poetry. But honestly, I thought that if it had not been the passing of her husband the material she churned out wouldn't have been as rich. It takes a moment in life and a situation that is so life changing to provoke work that is this powerful. I never thought i would be moved to tears from poetry reading... but i definitely was emotional.
She is excellent.