I'm writing to invite you to what I feel will be a stupendous literary event. Billy Collins and Laura Baudo Sillerman have been great supporters, and it has all come into place swiftly and perfectly.
Philip Larkin is a favorite poet of many seriously wonderful poets, writers, and artists, and this month Farrar, Straus & Giroux is bringing out the new edition of his Complete Poems, edited by Archie Burnett. When I realized this, I felt galvanized by the spirit of "attention must be paid," and in a very short time, we were able to draw the most dazzling writers and artists to join us, including Billy Collins, James Fenton, Adam Gopnik, Mary Karr, Nick Laird, Katha Pollitt, Zadie Smith, Andrew Sullivan, and Paul Simon.
The event is free and open to the public and it will be held in the Great Hall at Cooper Union (7 East 7th Street) on Tuesday, April 24th at 7PM. We will also have the Queens College Jazz Band, who are truly excellent, on hand to play some of Larkin's favorite music. (He was a jazz critic for many years.)
A special cocktail reception will be held for all those participating, and I would love to invite you to join us at the special price of $250. The reception will be held in the beautiful oval Peter Cooper suite at the top of the building a bit after the event at 8:30 or so, and the food and drink will be delicious. We can only accommodate twenty-five people at this exclusive reception, so please contact our office as soon as possible so that we may reserve your spot.
I hope you may be free to come. I'd love to see you.
With warm wishes,