Adrienne Rich first appeared at the Poetry Center in 1958 and returned often over the years. “I cannot give you a poetry of passions resolved, or of pure observation, or of self-enclosed self-exploration,” she said at a reading here in 1991. “Poetry is one of our great human resources, and often a strangely wasted resource. At a time when extremely sophisticated tactics are employed to misinform and demoralize us as a people, I believe that poetry speaks not from a separate sphere but in a different voice.”
On this evening, Ms. Rich’s family, friends and fellow poets gathered at 92Y for an evening of readings and remembrance. She had “one of the authentic, unpredictable, urgent, essential voices of our time,” wrote W. S. Merwin. “All her life she was in love with the hope of telling utter truth.” This event was co-sponsored by the Academy of American Poets, W. W. Norton, the Poetry Society of America and Poets House.