December 22, 2017

J. Chester Johnson Presenting His Two Newest Books at Poet’s House

During calendar 2017, two books, authored by J. Chester Johnson, were published: Now And Then: Selected Longer Poems (St. Johann Press) and Auden, the Psalms, and Me (Church Publishing of the Episcopal Church). On October 29th, 2017, Johnson presented on both books at Poets House in downtown Manhattan in New York City. The well-known and influential writer and poet, Cornelius Eady, introduced J. Chester Johnson and provided associated commentary.

Now And Then is a set of longer poems written by Johnson over a period of approximately four decades. The nine pieces in the volume range from an interracial murder in Arkansas along the Mississippi River Delta to the martyrdom of the 20th century prophet, Martin Luther King, Jr. Johnson has called Now And Then “the closest I will ever come to writing an autobiography.”

Auden, the Psalms, and Me is a non-fiction book that tells the story of the retranslation of the psalms contained in the current Book of Common Prayer of the Episcopal Church. W. H. Auden served as poet on the drafting committee for this retranslation from 1968 to 1971, at which point Auden decided to return to England and was replaced by J. Chester Johnson, who remained the poet on the drafting committee from 1971-79, when the revised Book of Common Prayer was published, including the new version of the psalms. Among other germane matters, the book discusses the correspondence that Johnson received from Auden on the retranslation project and the history of the psalms that have been incorporated into the Book of Common Prayer since 1549. This retranslation has become a standard with others adopting these psalms for their worship and service books.

Click on the video below for the audio presentation, including Cornelius Eady’s introduction and commentary and the entirety of J. Chester Johnson’s prepared remarks.


J. Chester Johnson Is Guest for National Radio Interviews on “Ed Tyll Show” - 1/11/18

J. Chester Johnson Presenting His Two Newest Books at Poet's House

Video for Auden, the Psalms, and Me authored by J. Chester Johnson

J. Chester Johnson Interviewed on the Televised ‘In The Arena’ Program

Save the Dates!
Upcoming Events Related To My Two Books Published In 2017

Distinguished Alumnus J. Chester Johnson spoke on April 26th & 27th, 2017 at the University of Arkansas

Reflection and Reconciliation: The Elaine Race Massacre – Delta Cultural Center, 141 Cherry Street, Helena, Arkansas on Sunday, April 23rd, 2017


J. Chester Johnson Beside the Display of His Iconic Poem "St. Paul's Chapel"

J. Chester Johnson Reads Poetry at Deborah Danner's Memorial

J. Chester Johnson Reads His Poem, "St. Paul's Chapel," at the Calling of the Names Ceremony 15 Years After 9/11

J. Chester Johnson Is Featured In NBC New York Article

J. Chester Johnson Appeared at the Cornelia St. Café on Sunday, June 26th

J. Chester Johnson read as part of FOUR WAY BOOKS AND FRIENDS Program at NYU Bookstore

J. Chester Johnson at Heavenly Rest Episcopal Church, NYC, February 25th, 2016


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