Fort Lyon Writers-in-Residence Reading

Editor's note: Lighthouse welcomed 2019 Fort Lyon resident writers Michael Fischer and Sarah Shotland for a reading and audience Q&A, where they read some of their own work, some Fort Lyon residents' work, and discussed the residency and their experiences. You can learn more about the Fort Lyon Writer-in-Residence program here.

I’ve never been more excited to read than I was the night of the Fort Lyon Writers-in-Residence reading. I’d returned from the fort earlier that day; I’d barely had time to shower off the 3.5-hour car ride before making my way to Lighthouse. But it didn’t matter. I couldn’t wait to get up there.

I’d spent my last week at Fort Lyon soliciting work from residents in my writing workshop, and I arrived at Lighthouse with a small handful of prose and poetry from some incredibly talented people. Putting their words in the air that evening was a true privilege, and I relished every second.

As a selection from my own work, I chose part of an essay that uses my relationship with my niece to examine the struggle to live in the moment, despite disaster looming barely out of frame. It’s a common topic among residents at Fort Lyon: “just for today,” “one day at a time.” I wanted to honor the depth of that challenge—the challenge to stay present—that every one of us faces.

*Content warning: this episode contains depictions of violence, abuse, sexual assault, substance abuse, self-harm, and suicide that some listeners may find disturbing.