Tuesday, April 4 – poet Paul J. Willis

 

My guest this week on Bibliocracy Radio is Paul J. Willis.  He is a poet whose elegant if deceptively easy-seeming engagement with voice and form might be obscured on first read by the delight he manufactures through humanity and humor, his familiar and affirming interaction with people and place, and his examination of nature and faith.  Willis has a long history as a teacher and writer, with poems appearing in hundreds of publications, including the 1996 edition of Best American Poetry, Poetry magazine, Wilderness, and Christian Century. Garrison Keillor has featured Willis’s poetry on The Writer’s Almanac.  He has a national reputation but also served as poet laureate of the city of Santa Barbara, California, where he lives and teaches.  Alas, my own introduction to the poetry of Paul J. Willis is embarrassingly tardy, but in his latest, Getting to Gardisky Lake, both new and longtime fans of his work will be immediately enrolled in his generous and affirming worldview. And he is a terrific reader, which you will hear if you tune in on the radio, on your computer or later, whenever you like, as a free download on your favorite device.  Also stay tuned for the podcast of this show, and your opportunity to subscribe to it.  Thanks for listening, and for supporting community radio station KPFK, where everybody should know that programming about the arts, public affairs, politics, music and resistance have been going strong for almost sixty years.  Play loud!