More Than Allusion

Fiona Sze-Lorrain’s Rain in Plural

All times are troubled, all worlds are full of both wounds and wonders. Poetry has always played a role in articulating these realities, and yet at the same time it provides insights that transcend the moment and speak to the larger human condition. Poetry notes the ebb and flow of tides, the flood surge or parching of rivers and streams. But it can also count each raindrop and, in a line or image, hold it up to the light, so that we can know both the rain and the ocean at the same time.

In this conversation, William C. Sharpe spoke with Fiona Sze-Lorrain about her new, fourth collection of poetry, Rain in Plural, just out from Princeton University Press this autumn. Both Sharpe and Sze-Lorrain have served as Fellows at the Columbia Institute for Ideas and Imagination in Paris, and before the Covid-19 struck, were exchanging ideas about the fundamental impulses of humans. In addition to requiring health, security, and love, do all people on some level feel a need to create, or a need to move through the world? Their conversation explores themes of mobility, perception, writing, and reading, and the interrelated, shared creativity of poet and critic.

Read their full conversation here.

William Sharpe
United States
Fiona Sze-Lorrain


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