Gail Godwin, GETTING TO KNOW DEATH: A Meditation

Event date: 
Thursday, June 20, 2024 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
Oblong Rhinebeck
6422 Montgomery Street
Rhinebeck, NY 12572

 

In conversation with Claudia Coenen.

"Getting to Know Death could just as easily be called Getting to Know Life. As a meditation, it is both unsentimental and full of wonder. As a piece of writing, it stands beside the best of Godwin's fiction. Extraordinary." -Ann Patchett

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Gail GodwinGetting To KNow Death: A Meditation by Gail GodwinClaudia Coenen

Ingmar Bergman once said that an artist should always have one work between himself and death. When renowned author Gail Godwin tripped and broke her neck while watering the dogwood tree in her garden at age eighty-five, a lifetime of writing and publishing behind her and a half-finished novel in tow, Bergman's idea quickly unfurled in front of her, forcing her to confront a creative life interrupted. In Getting to Know Death, Godwin shares what spoke to her while in a desperate place. Remembering those she has loved and survived, including a brother and father lost to suicide, and finding meaning in the encounters she has with other patients as she heals, she takes stock of a life toward the end of its long graceful arc, finding her path through the words she has written and the people she has loved.


Gail Godwin is a three-time National Book Award finalist and the bestselling author of more than a dozen critically acclaimed books, including the novels Grief Cottage, Flora, Father Melancholy's Daughter, and Evensong, and Publishing: A Memoir. She has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts grants for both fiction and libretto writing, and the Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She lives in Woodstock, New York.

Claudia Coenen, CGC, FT, MTP is a certified grief counselor in private practice at The Karuna Project in Hudson, New York. She presents workshops using expressive modalities on grief, fear, and uncertainty in complex situations and vicarious trauma in the workplace. Claudia is a fellow in thanatology through the Association for Death Education and Counselling and holds a Master's Degree in transpersonal psychology, with a focus on creativity and innovation.


Oblong Books in Rhinebeck is a fully wheelchair accessible space with on-site van accessible parking. Microphones and speakers will not be used at this event but can be made available with advance notice. Our chairs are stackable and have arms. If you have specific questions about the space or how an event can be made more accessible to you, please do not hesitate to contact us: info@oblongbooks.com


 

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