Sho Sugita - "Spiral Staircase"

Saturday, February 11, 2017 - 3:00pm - 4:30pm

"Translator Sho Sugita's ingenious handling of the high-impact, anxiously mutating poetry of Hirato Renkichi—central to the blink-and-it's-over Japanese Futurist literary movement, dead at 29—brings into sharp focus a momentous, of-the-moment figure little known in the English-speaking world.

Hirato's spring-loaded motto:
Directness is my mores.
My        action.
My        art.
(from "Poem of Directness")" —David Grubbs

Sho Sugita reads from his translation of Spiral Staircase, the first definitive volume of Hirato Renkichi's poems to appear in English.

At the Co-op


About the book: Once called “the Marinetti of Japan” by David Burliuk, Hirato Renkichi produced a unique brand of Futurism from the late 1910s and early 1920s through poetry, criticism, and guerrilla performance. Contributing to the earliest productions of Japanese avant-garde poetry, his aggressive experimentation with speed, spatialization, and performability would later influence what became a lively community of Dadaist and Surrealist writers in pre-war Japan. Spiral Staircase is the first definitive volume of Renkichi’s poems to appear in English.

With an introduction by Sho Sugita and an afterword by Eric Selland.

About the translator: Sho Sugita lives in Matsumoto, Japan. His recent poems and translations have appeared or are forthcoming in VOLT, Poems by Sunday, Chicago Review, 6x6, Lana Turner, Paperbag, A Perimeter, and Asymptote.

Event Location: 
Seminary Co-op Bookstore
5751 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637