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WRITER: KEITH VEZEAU
CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
e-mail: winston-barclay@uiowa.edu

Release: Oct. 1, 1999

Denis Johnson, Writers' Workshop graduate and former faculty member, reads Oct. 15

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Denis Johnson, an alumnus and former faculty member of the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, will read from his work at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15, in Lecture Room I of UI Van Allen Hall. The reading, sponsored by the Writers' Workshop, is free and open to the public.

Born in Munich, Germany, Johnson moved frequently when he was young; he grew up in Tokyo, Manila, and Alexandria, Va. He published his first collection of poetry, "The Man Among The Seals," when he was 19, two years before graduation from the UI with a bachelor's degree in English.

Johnson has published both fiction and poetry including "Angels," "Resuscitation of a Hanged Man," "Already Dead : A California Gothic," "Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations Millennium General Assembly : Poems Collected and New," "Jesus' Son," "Fiskadoro," "The Veil," and "Incognito Lounge."

His first poetry collection was called "an astonishing book" by the Virginia Quarterly Review. Poet David St. John said Johnson's poems "speak -- with passion and wit -- for every hushed or broken voice in America's cities of night."

Johnson credits UI poetry teacher Marvin Bell for encouraging him early on at the Writers' Workshop.