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W&L’s Ball to Give Anne and Edgar Basse Jr. Public Reading Gordon Ball will read from his recent book, "My San Francisco," on May 13.

Ball-400x600 W&L's Ball to Give Anne and Edgar Basse Jr. Public ReadingBall will read from his recent book, “My San Francisco.”

Washington and Lee University’s Leyburn Library will host Gordon Ball, visiting associate professor of English, for a public reading on May 13 at 4 p.m.

Ball will read from his recent book, “My San Francisco.” The event is free and open to the public to view online. Registration is required and can be accessed at tiny.cc/mysanfran.

In his large-format chapbook, Ball recounts connections with San Francisco and the impact the “City of Hills” has had on his life. Beginning with his first view of San Francisco from the Pacific Ocean as a small child, the book depicts Ball’s Bay Area experiences, including hostile confrontations during the Vietnam War, arriving there with poet Allen Ginsberg at the end of a cross-country tour, and appreciations of the city’s unique charm.

“His sweet, wonderful story is as beautiful as San Francisco fog and sunsets,” said Poet Andrei Codrescu.

Ball’s words are complemented by several photographs, including two of his own. With Ginsberg, Ball edited “Allen Verbatim” and two volumes of the poet’s journals. He is the author of two other memoirs and a volume of short stories. Currently he’s at work on his family’s history, dating from the late 19th century in the Ohio River Valley through 1920s Shanghai, China, and a World War II prison camp.

Ball is retiring after what he terms “six wonderful years” at W&L. This presentation serves as his farewell.

This event is part of The Anne and Edgar Basse Jr. Author Talk Series and is presented by the Washington and Lee University Library, which showcases the creative and scholarly works produced by members of the university community. During each installment of this series, typically held within Leyburn Library, a W&L author speaks about a recently published monographic work, fields audience questions and is available to sign copies of the discussed book. Ball’s talk is being conducted virtually because of COVID-19 restrictions.