Claremont, Calif. (January 15, 2015)—Pitzer College Professor Brent Armendinger’s new book of poetry, The Ghost in Us Was Multiplying, explores the nature of language and the relationship between ethics and desire, between what is intimate and what is public. The Ghost in Us Was Multiplying was released today by Noemi Press.
In his review in Cleaver Magazine, the poet Johnny Payne says that none of the book’s 43 poems should be missed. “I’m picky, always mentally editing (sometimes unfairly) what I read, yet I couldn’t find a single poem to pluck.”
Reading the opening of the poem “Narrow Hallways,” one sees why the writer Maggie Nelson describes Armendinger’s verse as “hushed, as if spoken the morning after a heavy snow.”
Before the invention of glass,
time was not translucent. Mostly
it kept to itself, sleeping inside
the minerals that formed
below our restlessness
Armendinger, who is an associate professor of English & world literature at Pitzer, teaches creative writing and courses such as Poetry and Public Space. He talks about poetry less in terms of composition than of comprehension.
“A poem creates an opening in language, a place where we encounter those things we can’t immediately understand,” Armendinger said. “There is an ethics in not turning away, in finding value—even beauty—in all we do not know.”
In addition to his new book, Armendinger is the author of two chapbooks, Archipelago and Undetectable. He studied at Bard College and the University of Michigan, where he received an Avery Hopwood Award in Poetry. His poems have appeared in many publications, including Aufgabe, Colorado Review and Denver Quarterly. He has taught at Pitzer since 2008.
A book release for The Ghost in Us Was Multiplying is scheduled at the Queer Resource Center of The Claremont Colleges on Wednesday, February 4, at 4 p.m. On Sunday, February 8, Professor Armendinger will host a reading at Skylight Books in Los Angeles with Claudia Rankine, professor of English at Pomona College. Further details of his upcoming book tour are available on his website: www.brentarmendinger.com.