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University of Iowa News Release


April 21, 2009

UI Writers' Workshop guest poet Mark McMorris reads April 29

Jamaican poet and critic Mark McMorris, a guest of the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, will read from his work in a free, public event at 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 29, in the Frank Conroy Reading Room of the Dey House on the UI campus.

McMorris, a faculty member at Georgetown University, is the author, most recently, of "The Café at Light," a book of lyric dialogue, prose, and verse. He is director of the Georgetown's Lannan Center for Poetics and Social Practice.

Susan Stewart wrote, "'The Café at Light' is a beautiful and original book. Mark McMorris has a genuinely cosmopolitan imagination -- one that moves musically, and with rapidity and insight, from intimacy to our citizenship in the world and back -- and he continually invents poetic forms that are adequate to his remarkable extension of poetry's domain."

His other books include "The Blaze of the Poui," which was selected by C.D. Wright for the 2002 Contemporary Poetry Series and was also a finalist for the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize; "The Black Reeds," winner of the Contemporary Poetry Series prize from the University of Georgia Press; "Moth-Wings" and "Palinurus Suite."

McMorris's critical writing has appeared in "Poetry and Pedagogy: The Challenge of the Contemporary," Xcp: Crosscultural Poetics, Tripwire, and the Journal of Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies. His fiction has appeared in publications including "Ancestral House: The Black Short Story in the Americas and Europe," Callaloo and Conjunctions.

His other honors include the Gertrude Stein Award in Innovative American Poetry and two nominations for the Pushcart Prize, and he was twice a finalist for the National Poetry Series.

The Writers' Workshop is a graduate program of the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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