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The Life of a Poet: Conversations with Ron Charles – Dana Levin
Tuesday, April 4, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EDT
Join Ron Charles, The Washington Post Editor of Book World, for an in-depth discussion with poet Dana Levin. The Life of a Poet series offers a rare opportunity to consider a writer’s entire career and explore the major events that have shaped their work. Readings from the work are interspersed throughout the conversation. A book signing will follow.
Poet Dana Levin grew up in California’s Mojave Desert and earned a BA from Pitzer College and an MA from New York University.
Levin’s collections of poetry include In the Surgical Theatre (1999), Wedding Day (2005), and Sky Burial (2011). Selecting Levin’s manuscript for the American Poetry Review/Honickman First Book Prize, Louise Glück praised the work as “sensuous, compassionate, violent, extravagant.” In the Surgical Theatre also won the John C. Zacharis First Book Award from Ploughshares, the Witter Bynner Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the PEN/Osterweil Award.
Levin’s free-verse, image-driven poems grapple with the legacies of both Confessionalism and Language poetry by engaging and questioning the self, while using line breaks, punctuation, and syntax as primarily sound-driven tools. In a 2008 interview with the Kenyon Review, Levin noted, “[F]or me, imagination is a transpersonal force. Its products can come unbidden; when asked to be employed it is not tame, but surprises, frustrates, stuns, and confounds.”
Levin’s honors include awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rona Jaffe Foundation, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Witter Bynner Foundation and the Library of Congress, the Lannan Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the Whiting Foundation. Her work has been widely anthologized and has won several Pushcart Prizes.
She lives in Santa Fe and teaches at Maryville University in St. Louis, where she serves as distinguished writer in residence.
Ron Charles is the editor of The Washington Post’s Book World section. For several years, he also edited The Post’s “Poet’s Choice” column in Book World. His reviews have won the National Book Critics Circle Award for best criticism and 1st place for Arts & Entertainment Commentary from the Society for Features Journalism. Washingtonian Magazine named him as one of the 40 people who shaped DC in 2010.
This event is free and open to the public. Reservations are required.
Co-sponsored by Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital, the Library of Congress, The Washington Post and National Capital Bank.