Yale Press wraps up Nat’l Poetry Month with awards and readings

Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice: Janet MalcolmAt their annual awards ceremony last night, The Publishing Triangle announced Janet Malcolm, author of the critically acclaimed Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice, as winner of the Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction. View the complete list of award winners here.

This remarkable work of literary biography and investigative journalism, turns on the mysterious survival of Stein and Toklas, as Jewish lesbians in Occupied France. Also a fascinating illumination of the world of Stein scholarship, and a stunningly perceptive work of criticism.

120younger_poets For those poetry lovers in the New Haven area, the five most recent winners of the prestigious Yale Series of Younger Poets competition will read from their work on Friday, May 2nd.  Free and open to the public, the event will take place at the Whitney Humanities Center, 53 Wall Street, Room 208, at 4:00 p.m.

Awarded since 1919, the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize celebrates the most prominent new American poets by bringing the work of previously unpublished artists to the attention of the larger public.  Previous winners of the prize include such talents as Adrienne Rich, John Ashberry, and Robert Hass.  It is the longest-running poetry prize in the United States. More information on the event after the jump.

The event on May 2nd will be introduced and moderated by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and former U.S. Poet Laureate Louise Glück, the Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence at Yale, and a fellow of Calhoun College.  Ms. Glück is also as the current judge for the Yale Series of Younger Poets competition.

The featured poets for the event are Peter Streckfus, who won the prize in 2003; Richard Siken, the 2004 winner; Jay Hopler, the 2005 winner; Jessica Fisher, the 2006 winner; and Fady Joudah, the 2007 winner and most recent recipient of the prize.  The poets will read from recent work.

Peter Streckfus teaches creative writing at The University of Alabama.  His prize-winning book, The Cuckoo, received much positive critical attention, including this from the Virginia Quarterly Review: “The pleasures in The Cuckoo are many; Streckfus’s sense of humor is quite fetching, as are his social awareness lyrics. . . . [A] promising debut collection.”  Richard Siken’s book, Crush, which won the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize, also won a Lambda Literary Award, the Thom Gunn Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.  In a review in Rain Taxi, his book was described as “An explosive, frantic splash of language and imagery.”  Jay Hopler, who teaches at the University of South Florida and is the editor of a forthcoming anthology of younger American poetry, is the author of the critically acclaimed collection of poems Green Squall. Publishers Weekly called the poems in Green Squall “truly stunning.”  Jessica Fisher recently received her Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Berkeley.  The New Yorker called her book, Frail-Craft, “an intelligent, often playful collection.”  Fady Joudah is a medical doctor in Houston and a member of Doctors Without Borders.  His book, The Earth in the Attic, is, in the author’s own words, “a book of exile…a metaphor for current psychic reality.”

The poetry reading is sponsored jointly by Yale University Press and the Whitney Humanities Center.

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