CONTACT: LINZEE MCCRAY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-2008; fax (319) 335-2055
1996 Iowa Poetry Prize co-winner published by UI Press
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- A collection of poems that was awarded a 1996 Iowa Poetry
Prize has been published by the University of Iowa Press.
"The Gates of the Elect Kingdom," by John Wood, is a collection
of narrative and lyrical poetry that showcases Wood's adeptness with lyricism
as well as the short form. The collected poems were also noted for their ability
to sustain a sequence and for evoking a sensuous feel for contemporary life
and the life of the past.
In the title work, Wood uses a series of lyrical poems to describe the attempt
by German-born Wilhelm Johannes Hoade to found and maintain a utopian community
on the Kansas prairie of the 1850s. The 17 poems of the cycle and the introductory
"proem" weave historical accounts and imaginative narration to re-create
the spiritual hopes and the physical and psychic ordeals of Hoade and his
Said psychologist Robert Coles: "For the many who have wanted to know
more about the moral and intellectual roots of the Hoadeite movement and,
too, its complex social development, this extended lyrical narrative will
prove to be a godsend."
The collection also includes a free but artistically faithful translation
of some of the poetry of Dafydd ap Gwilym, one of the great poets of medieval
Wales, and two sections of original poetry by Wood.
John Wood is professor of art and English and director of the creative writing
program at McNeese State University. He lives in Lake Charles, La.
"Gates of the Elect Kingdom" is available at bookstores nationwide
for $10.95 as a paperback original. The book can also be ordered from UI Press
(319) 384-3807 (for calls within Johnson County) or 1-800-235-2665 (outside
Information is also available at the UI Press website: http://www.uiowa.edu/~uipress/