Poets Dana Levin, Iris Jamahl Dunkle, and Dean Radar
On Thursday, November 3rd at 6 p.m., poet Dana Levin, author of Now Do You Know Where You Are, will be in conversation with poets Iris Jamahl Dunkle and Dean Rader at Readers' Books. All three poets use their work to examine what it means to be human in the complex worlds that we live in today. Dana Levin's collection, Now Do You Know Where You Are, was written between 2016 and 2020 and serves as a brave and perceptive companion as the reader walks through the disorientations of personal and collective transformation. She works in a variety of forms, calling on beloveds and ancestors, great thinkers and religions—convened by her own spun-of-light wisdom and intellectual hospitality. This, her fifth collection of poetry, is a New York Times Editors’ Choice pick.
Iris Jamahl Dunkle's work as a poet and a biographer connects directly to the Sonoma Valley; her biography of Charmian Kitterdge London served as inspiration and a spring-board for her collection of poetry, West : Fire : Archive, which bridges the historical experiences of Charmian to the devastation of the 2017 fires, and ultimately to the perceived history of the American West. Poet Dean Rader's most recent work, Self-Portrait as Wikipedia Entry, is an innovative collection of poems that merge traditional and experimental forms to interrogate the concepts of aesthetics, identity, and America arriving at a final question: is the self colored with and by and the same palette that colors the nation? Together these three poets aim to find the same truths: how the soul can be transmuted by personhood and the pressures of the world around us.
Dana Levin's other recent books include Banana Palace (2016) and Sky Burial (2011), which The New Yorker called “utterly her own and utterly riveting.” Her poems and essays have appeared in Best American Poetry, The New York Times, The American Poetry Review, The Nation, Poetry, and The Yale Review, among other publications. She is a grateful recipient of many honors, including those from the National Endowment for the Arts, PEN, and the Library of Congress, as well as from the Rona Jaffe, Whiting, and Guggenheim Foundations. Levin teaches in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and serves as Distinguished Writer in Residence at Maryville University in St. Louis.
Iris Jamahl Dunkle is an award-winning literary biographer, essayist, and poet. She obtained her MFA in poetry from New York University, and her PhD in American Literature from Case Western Reserve University. Dunkle lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Dean Rader has authored or co-authored eleven books, including his debut collection of poems, Works & Days, which won the 2010 T. S. Eliot Poetry Prize and his 2014 collection Landscape Portrait Figure Form. In 2021, he and Victoria Chang began a groundbreaking collaborative column, “Two Roads: Poetry in Dialogue” for The Los Angeles Review of Books. At present, he is collaborating with the calligrapher Thomas Ingmire on a series of unique artist books that merge text and image in addition to being a professor at the University of San Francisco.