Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Just Published!
Louise Morgan Runyon's second book of poetry, LANDSCAPE / Fear & Love.

Kick-Off Book-Signing and Performance:
Saturday & Sunday, November 17 & 18
8 p.m.
Beacon Hill Arts Center Studio Theatre
410 W. Trinity Place, Decatur, GA 30033
Tickets: $10 / Available at the door

An evening of Poetry, Music, Dance and Puppetry:
Louise Runyon and Tom Bell will present their dance duet, "Water Rock Lizard Fire;" Runyon will perform her puppetry piece, "Conversations of a Lifetime;" classical and jazz pianist Adam Cole will perform; and Runyon will perform two sets of poetry and give a reading of her children's book, Petunias In The Window.

About LANDSCAPE / Fear & Love:
*** "These poems paint not only the skin, but the muscle and bones of the world and of a life. To read them is to feel through your feet the hidden rugged forces from which emerges the apparent, and to see the forces of movement in that which we mistake for eternal." -- Thomas Bell, Program Director, Decatur Book Festival

"There is absolutely no pretense about [Runyon’s] art… She reads aloud with humor, wit and grace as she moves about a self-styled stage freely, confidently… Runyon is an artistic force to be reckoned with, a woman of substance."
-- Atlanta Journal-Constitution

LANDSCAPE / Fear & Love is now available - see ordering info below.

ALSO AVAILABLE! Runyon's first book of poetry, Reborn (see below for info about Reborn). Scroll down for sample poems from both books.

To order: Mail check for $17 per book (includes shipping & handling), payable to Louise Runyon, to P.O. Box 33601, Decatur, GA 30033-0601. Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. GREAT GIFTS!

To receive e-mails about upcoming performances: E-mail LouiseRunyon@aol.com, with "Art List" in subject line.

About Reborn:
*** "Louise Runyon proves that her body is not the only thing that is lithe and graceful. Her poetry ebbs and flows and takes the reader on an emotional journey from her days as a steel mill worker, a dancer, a mother and beyond. Her words capture a life in motion and a life that continues to evolve. Reborn is a splendid tango of words and thoughts, urging everyone to join the dance." -- Collin Kelley, author of Better To Travel

*** "[Runyon] has a special skill of using words and songs as rhythmical underpinnings to her skillfully modulated movements…intensely personal and intensely portrayed." -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution

*** "Runyon reads as if words were dance movements flowing from her open heart." -- Art Papers

In other news:
Louise Morgan Runyon presented her poetry at the Southern Women Writers Conference which took place at Berry College in Rome, GA September 27-29. Maya Angelou was the keynote speaker at the conference. Runyon also performed her poetry at Decatur Book Festival which took place over Labor Day weekend in Decatur, GA.

Sample poem from LANDSCAPE / Fear & Love:

The Geology of New York

The geology of New York
I never noticed as a child, except in my bones,
except I knew I didn’t like to climb as my friends did,
across the street from our apartment building,
the big gray rocks of Fort Washington
where the Battle of Harlem Heights was fought
in the revolutionary war

I noticed the cobblestones, of course, of 122nd Street,
those big gray blocks of native rock, long since paved,
hardly ever saw the Hudson, just blocks away,
never knew the Hudson River Valley.
Never climbed on the gray crags of the Palisades
across the Hudson, just heard of them,
thought of them only as
Palisades Amusement Park

The grand architecture of Manhattan,
reflecting the sheer fact of available building material,
the geology of New York,
the big gray rocks everywhere
in all the parks

But now, though still I hardly know it, except in my bones,
the gneiss and the schist of the rocks in the parks
the foundations of the great buildings
the heavy curbstones, the Palisades and rock walls
the great breadth of the Hudson
impress themselves upon me

I know so little of it, but get a sense, a glimmer,
of the beauty and the grandeur of the natural world of it,
so covered over by Times Square lights,
smoke-ring-blowing billboards, cars
jutting out of buildings,
while underneath –

so far from the land I really know
(its beauty always pointed out) –

so far from the blue mountains of North Carolina –

those gentle mountains of my ancestral home,
sleeping giants covered with green army blankets,
great gentle beasts you could nestle down in,
or whom you could straddle and ride –

so far from those blue mountains,
underneath "New York"
is a wild and rugged island, a majestic river valley
made from solid bedrock, gray gigantic rock,
the river cutting through it
in its rush to the sea

Sample Poem from Reborn:

The Wistfulness of Fall

The Joe-Pye weed
is a-comin’ up
along with the goldenrod,
neither yet their huge,
unruly selves,
but both still just yet small
and sedate

The Joe-Pye weed,
the goldenrod,
the blood-red lobelia, too,
a brilliant scarlet plume,
just startin’ out, all three:
and surely
the reddest red
you ever did see

It’ll be fall soon,
boy’ll be gone.

Somethin’s happened to the pond,
it’s ‘bout gone,
though we’ve had

Golden-green grass covers half,
another quarter is mud,
the last quarter
is muddy water

But birds abound in it,
a half-grown, snowy,
great white egret takes off,
spreads its elegant white wings
in flight,
flies back, and flies
way up into a high tree,
its elegant
thin long white neck

A half-grown, great blue
heron takes off as well,
ungainly, kinda,
like it don’t quite know yet
how to fly
I saw it as a baby, earlier
this summer

The now-small pond
is full yet still,
with a solid dozen of teal male ducks
and brown females,
too far away for telling,
but half-grown ducklings,
all splashing about, paddling and chirping,
in the mud

Storm‘ll be comin’ on soon
There’s white clouds on white,
gray clouds on gray,
there’s white ones on gray ones,
and gray ones on white

There’s blue, though, yet and still –
blue, on the other side of the pond,
blue as blue –
and above the golden-green grasses,
with the whites and the grays on the other side,
and the teals and the mallards,
it looks like a landscape portrait paintin’,
just as glorious as you could see

The mimosa
is no longer pink,
it’s long, ridged green pods
are just a-hangin’

I best be gettin’ on now,
that almost-grown
boy’s goin’ off on a weekend trip,
‘fore he goes off in the fall

I want to catch him,
tell him bye

About Louise Runyon:
Louise Morgan Runyon is a dancer/choreographer as well as poet. Artistic Director of Louise Runyon Performance Company, she has performed her one-woman show, Crones, Dolls and Raging Beauties, around the nation. Runyon is also a practitioner of the Feldenkrais Method® of somatic education, a movement-based mind-body discipline. She lives in Atlanta.

Dance Photos: Neil Dent
Book Cover Design: Lucas Barth
Book Cover Photo: Dan Schultz

Book Cover Painting: John T. Morgan