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Saturday, October 13 • 10:30am - 11:30am
Bullets into Bells: Poetry and Music

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How do artists grapple with tragedy? Poet Brian Clements (whose wife Abbey Clements was a teacher at Sandy Hook and survived the mass shooting there) dealt with unimaginable horror in the best way he knew how: by gathering poets and community members to reflect on the urgent need for gun control. Martín Espada’s poem “Heal the Cracks in the Bell of the World” inspired the title of the resulting volume, Bullets into Bells: Poets and Citizens Respond to Gun Violence. Espada and Brian Clements will read their poems, and Abbey Clements and anti-gun activist Clai Lasher-Sommers will share their responses. And, as befits the line from Espada’s poem--”Here the bells sing of a world where weapons crumble deep / in the earth, and no one remembers where they were buried”--the readings will be interspersed with music on themes of peace and nonviolence, performed by the Back Bay Ringers handbell ensemble. Hosting this powerful and transformative session is poet and activist Julie Carr, author most recently of Someone Shot My Book, a collection of essays on the role of art in a violent culture.

avatar for Julie Carr

Julie Carr

Julie Carr is an award-winning author of poetry and prose, as well as the cofounder of Counterpath Press. Her poems and essays have appeared in such journals as The Nation, Boston Review, APR, New American Writing, Denver Quarterly, Volt, A Public Space, 1913, and The Baffler, as... Read More →

avatar for Abbey Clements

Abbey Clements

Abbey Clements is Deputy Lead in Connecticut of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and a teacher at Head o'Meadow Elementary in Newtown, CT. Previously, she taught 2nd grade at Sandy Hook School, where she taught at the time of the shooting on December 14, 2012.
avatar for Brian Clements

Brian Clements

Brian Clements is a poet and coeditor of Bullets into Bells: Poets & Citizens Respond to Gun Violence (Beacon, 2017). He is a professor of Writing, Linguistics, and Creative Process at Western Connecticut State University.
avatar for Martín Espada

Martín Espada

Martín Espada’s many books of poems include Vivas to Those Who Have Failed (2016), The Trouble Ball (2011), The Republic of Poetry (2006), and Alabanza (2003). He has received the 2018 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the Shelley Memorial Award, an Academy of American Poets Fellowship... Read More →
avatar for Clai Lasher-Sommers

Clai Lasher-Sommers

Clai Lasher-Sommers is the executive director of GunSense Vermont and a Fellow with Everytown Survivors Network. She was shot at the age of thirteen by her stepfather with a .306 high-powered hunting rifle.  
avatar for Back Bay Ringers

Back Bay Ringers

Back Bay Ringers (BBR) is an advanced, auditioned, handbell ensemble. Under the direction of Griff Gall, BBR has quickly developed a reputation for excellence, regularly performing at Boston-area landmarks such as Faneuil Hall, Symphony Hall, the Boston Children's Museum, and the... Read More →

Saturday October 13, 2018 10:30am - 11:30am EDT
BPL McKim Exhibition Hall Dartmouth St, Boston, MA 02116, USA