This Sunday, at The Hudson Valley Writers' Center, we will be paying tribute to the life and work of the late Linda Ashear. Linda Ashear was a well loved poet and mentor who had the rare ability to describe life in both its most heartwarming and heart rending moments. The poetry in her two chapbooks, Toward the Light and The Rowers, the Swimmers, and the Drowned, deals with everything from getting caught up in the overwhelming beauty of a sunset to getting caught up in the everyday absurdities and struggles of being a mother, a lover, a woman. In the poem "Valentine," which will be read by one of Linda's friends at Sunday's event, the speaker ponders what she would say if she were to write her lover a valentine. She muses over writing a love note about begging her lover to put the dirty clothes in their hamper, or detailing "the perfect shape of your ears," or about the fears they've experienced in their time together. Ultimately, she says, "Or would it simply say how impossible my world would be/ if you were not in it, how ridiculous, how utterly outrageous,/ even more outrageous than that we would someday grow old together,/ having left behind two bewildered husbands,/ and the scripts we knew we had to follow?" Though just a small excerpt of the rich collection of Ashear's poetry, this selection showcases the humor, wonder, and wit that can be found throughout Linda Ashear's work.
Linda Ashear was certainly an extraordinary poet and person, and if you would like to join us in celebrating her life and legacy, come to . A number of local poets will assemble to read selections of Ashear’s work, and poet and Ashear mentor and friend, Ann Lauinger, will host this tribute. Renowned cellist, Robert Kogan, will also be on hand to offer musical accompaniment to the event.