WRITER: ALEX CAREY
CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: March 16, 2001
Former U.S. Poet Laureate and UI faculty member Robert Hass will read
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Robert Hass, a former Poet Laureate of the United States,
will read from his work at 8 p.m. Monday, March 26 in Room 101 of Biology
Building East on the University of Iowa campus. The reading, which is sponsored
by the UI Writers Workshop, is free and open to the public.
Hass was a visiting faculty member in the Writers Workshop in 1995
when he was selected U.S. Poet Laureate, a post he held from 1995 to 1997.
He has won the MacArthur Genius Fellowship and twice received
the National Books Critic Circle Award. His first book, "Field Guide,"
earned the Yale Series of Younger Poets Award in 1973.
Hass other collections of poetry include "Praise," "Human
Wishes" and "Sun Under Wood." He also wrote "Twentieth
Century Pleasures," a book of essays on poetry. He has translated many
of the works of Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz and is the editor of Thomas Transtromers
"Selected Poems: 1954-1986" and "The Essential Haiku: Versions
of Basho, Buson, and Issa."
"Reading a poem by Robert Hass is like stepping into the ocean when
the temperature of the water is not much different from that of the air,"
Stanley Kunitz wrote in his foreword to Hass debut collection. "You
scarcely know, until you feel the undertow tug at you, that you have entered
into another element. Suddenly the deep is there, with its teeming life."
As U.S. Poet Laureate, Hass placed an emphasis on literacy and ecological
awareness. He helped promote and organize Watershed, a weeklong gathering
of writers and environmentalists designed to teach inner-city children about
the nation s tradition of nature writing.
In addition to his time at the UI, Hass has taught at the State University
of New York, Buffalo and St. Marys College. A professor of English at
the University of California-Berkeley since 1989, Hass was named Educator
of the Year in 1997 by the North American Association on Environmental Education.
A native of San Francisco, Hass was deeply influenced by the poets who lived
in the Bay Area during the 1950s. "I started out imagining myself as
a novelist or essayist, but then Gary Snyder and Allen Ginsberg came along;
and poetry, imbued with the whole lifestyle of the Beats, was much more exciting,"
Hass has said.
For more information about this event, contact the Writers Workshop
at 335-0416. For UI arts information, visit this new address -- www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
-- on the World Wide Web. To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>.