ESR Ministry of Writing Colloquium 2011 with Scott Cairns
Scott Cairns’ many works explore the unity between traditional dichotomies: art and belief, the body and spirit, doubt and faith. Reviewers have noted how Cairns “speaks with a literate religious conscience” (Mars Hill Review), “brings us to the very cusp of mystery” (Image), and writes poems that “may be as direct and sustained in their exploration of theological issues as any significant American poetry in decades” (The Christian Century). Yet his style is conversational, unpretentious, and often humorous. Cairns is known for embracing an artistic method that privileges discovery and delight over certainty, a method he will share during his time with us. His keynote address, “The Poem in Progress: A Way of Knowing,” will describe the poetic text as not being a means of expressing what is already known, but as a way of knowing, of seeing, of glimpsing what is not yet known.