Athens, Ga. – Noted American poet David St. John will give a free, public reading on Monday, March 30 at 7 p.m. at Ciné BarCafeCinema, 234 West Hancock Street, Athens. The reading is sponsored by The Georgia Review, who is the local host for the Georgia Poetry Circuit, a consortium of colleges and universities that tours three prominent poets a year around the state.
St. John is the author of nine collections of poetry, most recently The Face: A Novella in Verse, as well as a volume of essays, interviews and reviews entitled Where the Angels Come Toward Us. He is also co-editor, along with Cole Swensen, of the recently published American Hybrid: A Norton Anthology of New Poetry. His honors include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and his work has been published in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Poetry, American Poetry Review, Harper’s, The New Republic, and The Georgia Review.
St. John teaches at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where he is the director of the Ph.D. program in literature and creative writing. He lives in Venice, Calif. which he says is “the end of the road. People who travel different paths all, at some point or another, come to the end of the road. It’s gorgeous here, palms and wild parrots, mountains and sand and ocean. Sixties refugees and artists and movie stars and writers. Heaven.”
Susan Terris, writing in Ploughshares, describes St. John’s work as possessing “a distinctive, elegant, sensual voice. Like most poets, he writes about love and loss, but he manages to do so in a profound and philosophical way. Still, his humor and wit, his love of word play, are always present, too.” She writes that his latest, The Face, is an “edgy book with several stories going on at once . . . it’s about the disintegration and reintegration of the narrator’s persona, about a film being made about the narrator’s life, about the narrator’s interior and exterior landscapes and the ways he travels through them. It’s dangerous, risky work, but St. John has never been risk-averse.”
Opening for St. John will be local poet Melisa Cahnmann-Taylor, an associate professor of language and literacy at UGA. She’s published poems in American Poetry Review, Quarterly West, Puerto del Sol, Barrow Street, Cream City Review, and Alaska Quarterly, and won top poetry prizes from the Leeway and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundations. Many of her poems appear at www.coe.uga.edu/lle/faculty/cahnmann.
For more information, contact The Georgia Review at 706/542-3481 or see www.thegeorgiareview.com.