Late Night Library

Michael McGregor – Pure Act: The Uncommon Life of Robert Lax

Late Night Conversation, hosted by Paul Martone

Featured guests: Michael McGregor and John Beer

Michael N. McGregor is an author, journalist, editor, teacher and writing consultant based in Portland, OR.  A professor of English and Creative Writing at Portland State University, he holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University in New York and a BA in Journalism from the University of Oregon.


Lax cover

A companion piece to Thomas Merton’s bestselling autobiography The Seven Storey Mountain, Pure Act: The Uncommon Life of Robert Lax tells the story of Merton’s best friend and early spiritual inspiration. Written by a close friend of Lax, Pure Act gives an intimate view of a friendship and a life that affected Merton in profound ways. It was Lax, a daringly original poet himself, who encouraged Merton to begin writing poetry and Lax who told him he should desire to be a saint rather than just a Catholic. To the end of Merton’s life, Lax was his spiritual touchstone and closest friend.

Purchase Pure Act: the Uncommon Life of Robert Lax at IndieBound 















John Beer is the author of the poetry collection The Waste Land and Other Poems (2010), winner of the Norma Farber First Book Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the chapbook Lucinda (2013). Associative and imaginative, Beer’s work has been praised for its “passionate and watchful” moods, in the words of Norma Farber judge Bin Ramke. Ramke called The Waste Land and Other Poems “full of the most amazing engagements.”

Posted on: February 23, 2016 · Homepage, Late Night Conversation, Podcasts ·

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