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Release: Immediate

Pulitzer Prize winning poet Richard Wilbur will read at UI Nov. 13

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Richard Wilbur, former poet laureate of the United States and twice a Pulitzer Prize winner, will read from his work at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 13, in Lecture Room I of Van Allen Hall on the campus of the University of Iowa. The reading, sponsored by the UI Writers' Workshop, is free and open to the public.

Renowned as a translator as well as a poet, Wilbur has emerged as one of the preeminent men of letters of our time. The author is a World War II veteran, who is known for poetry that emphasizes the beauty of order and coherence in the natural world.

His poetry is characterized by a pervasive good humor and a sweetness of spirit unusual among the major poets of our century. Librarian of Congress Daniel J. Boorstin called Wilbur a "poet for all of us, whose elegant words brim with wit and paradox."

His translations of Racine, Moliere and others, many of which are included in his poetry collections, have won the Bollingen Prize, the PEN translation prize and many other awards. Alan Shaw wrote in the Hudson Review, "Richard Wilbur's translations of classic French drama are among the undiscovered treasures of our recent literature."

Of Wilbur's "New and Collected Poems," Robert Richman wrote in the New York Times Book Review: "If it were not for writers like him, future students might wonder if there were no poets in the late 20th century who championed beauty. . . . Fortunately we do have Richard Wilbur and our age will be deemed better for it."

In addition to the Pulitzer Prize, Wilbur has won the National Book Award for poetry. Among his numerous prizes and awards are the Los Angeles Times book prize and the Edna St. Vincent Millay Memorial Award, and he is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Wilbur's poems have appeared in the New Yorker, The Nation, the New Republic, the Harvard Advocate, the Atlantic Monthly, the Georgia Review, the Sewanee Review, the Virginia Quarterly, the Hudson Review, the Partisan Review and many other publications.