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Pop-up: Catherine Woodard

Sat, Nov 11, 2017 from 1:30 pm - 1:45 pm PST
1219 SW Park Ave Portland, OR 97205

Catherine Woodard reads in the Portland Art Museum galleries from her poetry collection, Opening the Mouth of the Dead.

Woodard is paired with Interlocking Life and Death by Maude Kerns; found in the Northwest Art, floor 3, gallery 303. Please reference the Portland Art Museum Map to find this location.


“The word for house and tomb is the same,” writes Catherine Woodard in her first full-length poetry collection, Opening the Mouth of the Dead. The story in poems is published by lone goose press in two editions: paperback and limited-edition book art. The central character is a third-grade girl growing up in 1960s North Carolina who uses the ancient Egyptian BOOK OF THE DEAD to navigate her complicated relationship with her father. She struggles to reconcile her heart with her brain in a family where her father grapples with alcoholism and depression. “Not only is the heart still needed, it’s still dangerous,” writes Woodard about mummies. “The brain is useless, removed and discarded.” The separation of brain and heart confuses and worries the narrator as she pores over pictures and spells in the BOOK OF THE DEAD for clues to help her father. Woodard shows a family longing for connection and forgiveness while dealing with grief.

Catherine Woodard

A poet and former journalist, Catherine Woodard helped return Poetry in Motion to the New York City subways and is a vice president of the Poetry Society of America. Her poems have appeared in literary journals, anthologies and CNN online. Woodard co-published Still Against War/Poems for Marie Ponsot and has been featured in The Best American Poetry blog. She chairs the NYC advisory committee of the News Literacy Project and is a past president of Artists Space for emerging visual artists. She writes and plays basketball in New York City.
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