CONTACT: Jana Marcus, Marketing & Communications
jana.marcus [at] cabrillo.edu
October 7, 2010
Aptos, CA—Cabrillo College is proud to host The First Annual Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Reading featuring Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner Robert Hass on Saturday, November 6 at 7:30 p.m., in the Cabrillo Music Recital Hall. This free event requires a ticket for admission. Free tickets will available starting October 7 at Bookshop Santa Cruz, Cabrillo Bookstore, UCSC McHenry Library, and Bookworks of Aptos. Doors will open at 6:30PM for first-come-first-served seating.
The First Annual Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Reading honors poet, teacher, and film critic Morton Marcus (1936–2009). Marcus, a cultural icon of Santa Cruz County, passed away from cancer in October of 2009. He was named Santa Cruz County Artist of the Year 1999, and was also a recipient of the Gail Rich Award in 2007 for his outstanding contributions to the cultural life of Santa Cruz.
“Morton was a man of incredible energy,” stated follow poet Joe Stroud. “He had enormous passions and he pursued them with zeal. He lived the life of the mind, and he lived the life of the heart as well.”
Throughout his life, Marcus actively brought together many of the art communities in the county. Among his active pursuits was his great belief in the importance and richness of poetry to our culture. The Annual Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Reading, co-sponsored by Poetry Santa Cruz, Ow Family Properties, Cabrillo College and UCSC, plans to honor Marcus and his beliefs by bringing an acclaimed writer to the admission-free Memorial Reading each year. This year’s inaugural event features acclaimed poet and writer Robert Hass.
Hass, who was also the U.S. Poet Laureate from 1995 to 1997, fondly recalls, “Morton was one of my earliest literary friends. He was a larger-than-life presence—startlingly generous, funny, intelligent, passionate about poetry, movies, music, and endlessly a pleasure to talk to. I think he made everyone feel better, feel life was more interesting, a way of being in the world that could have been exhausting to most, but didn’t seem to be for Mort. His presence was a gift, and so it is an honor, both sweet and serious, to get to read at an occasion to remember his life and work.”
The evening, hosted by Santa Cruz’s first poet laureate Gary Young, will highlight Hass reading from his own work, as well as readings by Joseph Stroud and Stephen Kessler from Marcus’s final and newly published book The Dark Figure in the Doorway: Last Poems.
The reading will conclude with a book sale and signing by Robert Hass of his newest book The Apple Trees at Olema: New and Selected Poems, as well as signings by Joe Stroud, Stephen Kessler and Gary Young. Marcus’s The Dark Figure in the Doorway: Last Poems will also be available for sale. Marcus completed the book shortly before his death. The poems, most written in the last years of his life, reflect on human folly, cruelty, greed, our obligations to the past, his belief in the power of the imagination, and the spiritual redemption of art. The book is published by White Pine Press of New York.
What: First Annual Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Reading featuring Robert Hass
When: Saturday, November 6, 2010 - 7:30 PM
Where: Cabrillo College Music Recital Hall, 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos, CA.
First-come-first-served seating. Doors open at 6:30 PM
FREE EVENT WITH TICKET*
* Free tickets available starting Oct. 7 at Bookshop Santa Cruz, Cabrillo Bookstore, UCSC McHenry Library, and Bookworks in Aptos.
Info: www.mortonmarcus.com or 831-479-5744
This event will broadcast on Community Television of Santa Cruz County on November 12 at 10 PM and November 13 at 8 PM, on Comcast Channel 25/Charter Channel 71.
About Robert Hass
Robert Hass is a poet, essayist, and translator. His most recent book, The Apple Trees at Olema: New and Selected Poems, was published by Ecco Press. He was published many volumes of translations of the Nobel laureate Czeslaw Milosz and a volume of translations of the Japanese haiku masters, Basho, Buson and Issa. His books of prose include Twentieth Century Pleasures: Prose on Poetry and Now and Then: The Poet’s Choice Columns,1997-2000. His work has received the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 2008, the National Book Award in poetry in 2007, and he has twice received the National Book Critics Circle Award, once for criticism in 1985 and once for poetry in 1998. He also served as poet Laureate of the United States from 1995-97. A native of the Bay Area, he teaches English and Environmental Studies at the University of California at Berkeley.
About Morton Marcus
Poet, teacher, and film critic Morton Marcus (1936–2009) was a cultural icon of Santa Cruz County for over 40 years. He was the Santa Cruz County Artist of the Year 1999 and a recipient of the Gail Rich Award in 2007 for his outstanding contributions to the cultural life of Santa Cruz. Among his published works are eleven volumes of poetry, including The Santa Cruz Mountain Poems, Pages from a Scrapbook of Immigrants, Moments Without Names, Shouting Down the Silence, Pursuing the Dream Bone, a novel, and his literary memoir, Striking Through the Masks. He taught English and Film at Cabrillo College for thirty years, was the co-host of the longest running poetry radio program in the nation, The Poetry Show, and was the co-host of the television film review show, Cinema Scene.
About The Morton Marcus Poetry Archive at UCSC
Mort Marcus’s Poetry Archive is now housed at UCSC’s Special Collections. Mort’s personal papers, manuscripts, and recordings reflect his legacy as a poet and educator, and his collection of poetry books, broadsides, literary magazines and correspondence with other poets and writers illuminates his deep involvement in and passion for the literary art of poetry. For more information about the Archive or to contribute to its support please contact Special Collections (firstname.lastname@example.org.)
About Cabrillo College
Cabrillo College is a leading California community college serving Santa Cruz County with locations in Aptos, Scotts Valley and Watsonville. It is ranked #1 in transfers to UC Santa Cruz. Founded in 1959, the college offers more than 100 academic and career technology programs that serve multiple educational goals such as A.A. and A.S. degrees, certificates of achievement, skills certificates, transfer to four-year institutions or for lifelong learning and personal enrichment. Its mission is to enhance the intellectual, cultural and economic vitality of its diverse community by assisting all students in their quest for lifelong learning and success in an ever-changing world.