Poet Jennifer Karmin recently announced that she is seeking collaborators for a four-thousand-word poem that she plans to perform in her hometown of Chicago. Each word will represent one of the more than forty-one hundred American soldiers killed in Iraq.
Using a selection of words submitted to her via e-mail, Karmin says she will create the piece, billed as an anti-war street performance, to be read on October 3 in front of the Vietnam War Memorial on the banks of the Chicago River. After the performance, the poet plans to distribute the collected words to passersby.
This spring and summer, Karmin presented variations on the piece, "Four Thousand Words Four Thousand Dead," in locations in Chicago and at the Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk and in San Francisco's Dolores Park. Next week's performance is part of the third annual Chicago Calling Arts Festival, which will take place from October 1 to October 12 and feature the work of Chicago-area writers, artists, and musicians in collaboration with artists living elsewhere in the United States and abroad. Information about Karmin's reading and other festival events is located on the Chicago Calling Web site.
Karmin requests that contributions of one to ten words be sent to her at firstname.lastname@example.org. "Submissions are ongoing," said the press release for the event, "as the Iraq War continues and the number of dead grows."