On Wednesday evening, more than thirty people gathered at the Kellogg Hubbard Library to listen to Steven Cramer read his poetry. Goddard College president Barbara Vacarr opened the reading, describing Steven’s accomplishments as a poet and the Director of the Creative Writing program at Lesley University. Steven read primarily from his new book Clangings, an unusual collection of poems written in the voice of an individual suffering from schizophrenia and exhibiting speech driven by sound rather than sense. The audience was silent, listening to a manifestation of language that is usually not shared or celebrated. Rachel Senechal, the Program and Development Director for the Kellogg Hubbard Library, describes her expAerience of listening to Steven read.
Listening to Steven Cramer read from his book, Clangings, was like no other poetry reading in PoemCity. It was imperative to have his poetry read aloud: the enunciation, alliteration, homonyms, fast-talking, disconnected ideas – was a different experience than reading the poems on a page. We like to offer unique aspects of poetry and Steven Cramer’s presentation fits that bill. I think his poetry is brilliant.
Other audience members remarked on his success in capturing the unique linguistic and psychological experience associated with clangings. Steven sandwiched his reading of poems from Clangings between several of his other poems, written in his own voice and equally eloquent.