Key West Literary Seminar-III
January 11, 2010
Key West Literary Seminar-III
Dara Wier, Yosef Komunyakaa, Rita Dove, Rhina Espaillat, Timothy Steele, Kirby Condon & Richard Wilbur
The crazy weather that Key West has experienced at the beginning of the new decade continued throughout the duration of the Literary Seminar. I felt bad that all the people who came to the island from across the nation had to experience the record cold weather. It was as cold as I can ever recall in the almost 20 years that I have been here, It rained most of the day Saturday and was very cold and windy throughout the weekend.
The inclement weather did have the positive effect of keeping almost all of the sessions at or near capacity as the registrants did not have the option to take a day to go to the beach or go snorkeling. Panelist Mark Strand did manage to get in a half day of fishing and the dolphin fish he caught was made into a tasty ceviche by our friends at Bad Boy Burrito and served at one of the receptions.
Trying to reflect on what were the hi-lights of the seminar is really impossible for me, the best sense of it can probably be garnered from reading the wonderful coverage provided by Arlo Haskell on the seminar’s “Littoral” section of their website (link below).
Suzy, Maxine & Victor
Certainly one reading that everyone was anxious to hear was that of the honoree, Richard Wilbur, which was the main event Saturday evening. Another packed house as registrants and speakers alike jammed into the San Carlos to hear his reading. It f\did not disappoint, as the crowd listened in rapt attention as one of America’s iconic living poets delivered an amazing reading.
Following Wilbur’s reading the annual party for the seminar at the Customs House was held late into Saturday evening. Art, great food, specialty drinks by Jason Rowan of Embury cocktails and entertainment by Melody Cooper’s delightful singing, all made for a wonderful evening. Even Rita Dove took a turn at the microphone, delighting the crowd by singing a few numbers.
Ashley & Doug
The seminar wrapped up on Sunday with a final morning session followed by the usual free and public session that is traditionally held on the final day. The local crowd lined up down the street and every seat in the San Carlos was full again.
Arlo, Erica, Matthea & Robert
Sunday evening was full again with the dinner for workshop participants sandwiched by two closing parties. One hosted by Jacob Dekker & John Padgett for the panelists and a second more raucous gathering for the staff and friends at the home of Arlo Haskell. It was a fun and fitting ending for what was a wonderful first experience for me as a seminar insider. Thanks so much to all the wonderful volunteers who made my job so easy, especially Margaret & Doug, to all the staff and board members and to the wonderful speakers who shared their beautiful work.
Michael, Margit, Doug & Margaret
S. Erin's hands
Elena & Ashley