Stephen Rodefer, a Memorial Tribute
Saturday NOV 21 @ Berkeley Arts Festival
2133 University Avenue (at Shattuck), Berkeley, 6:00 pm, free
Join friends, fellow poets, and family for a memorial tribute to poet Stephen Rodefer.
from Felix Brenner:
a son's obituary
1940 - 2015
A man of words, of excesses, lover of clothes, lover of love, Stephen Rodefer was born November 20, 1940 in Bellaire, Ohio, to Dorothy and Howard Rodefer. The youngest of three, brother to Rick and Judy, Stephen was raised on the hill-top, athletic with a racquet, and prone to blow glass. He died in Paris, at home amongst the trappings of his genius, exhausted books and wild paintings.
He was educated at Amherst College (BA), SUNY Buffalo (MA, ABT), and SFSU(MFA), going on to foster the pen of so many others, teaching around the world at the likes of UC Berkeley and San Diego, Cambridge University, the Pratt Institute of Art, and San Francisco State.
Stephen was devoted to his writing above all else. He was a brilliant passeur of thought and beauty, taking on L-A-N-G-U-A-G-E, reinventing Villon, working on traditional themes and form while always pushing well beyond.
Stephen leaves behind many clusters of friends made around the globe, interspersed networks coupled by his life, his narrative. He is survived by three sons, Benjamin, Felix, and Dewey, and now beats his drum beside his fourth, D(ear) J(esse), so missed during his final stanza. Our father's sons, progeny of verse.
To articulate in such failing words, albeit words of love, the life of a master of phrase would bring him a sly smile and some editorial joy. But go read for yourself, from VILLON to Four Lectures, from The Bell Clerk's Tears Keep Flowing to Left Under A Cloud, go read his everlasting word, his imprint on us, his mark on the world.
"Underneath you wear a flowing red robe, and I am an adoring suitor. My name is love, my dead body will be the rising sun, the day will last forever. I have always carried with me an urge of great melancholy, like a black cloth gardenia. It is an inheritance of heart and nerves. Here the maestro himself puts down his pen."*
*Show a Little Emotion, for the granite
from The Bell Clerk's Tears Keep Flowing (1978) by Stephen Rodefer
photo: Stephen Rodefer, by Tom Raworth
further details tba
THE POETRY CENTER
POETRY CENTER DIGITAL ARCHIVE
POETRY CENTER ARCHIVE NEWS
POETRY CENTER HIGHLIGHTS ON VIDEO
More information on the website
of the event.