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Legacy Conversations: Marilyn Nelson and Gregory Pardlo

November 21, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

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Join us for an unforgettable evening of poetry and conversation with Cave Canem Elder Marilyn Nelson and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Gregory Pardlo as they explore the nuances of writing one’s family history.  An elected Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and recipient of the 2019 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize from the Poetry Foundation, Marilyn Nelson is the author of numerous poetry collections and books for children and young adults. Her most recent publications include the memoir How I Discovered Poetry (Dial Books, 2014) and poetry collection, My Seneca Village (namelos, 2015). Gregory Pardlo is, most recently, author of Air Traffic (Knopf, 2018), a memoir in essay, and the poetry collection, Digest (Four Way Books, 2014), winner the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and a finalist for the Hurston Wright Legacy Award. Cave Canem fellow and scholar Chiyuma Elliott moderates. Free and open to the public. This event is co-sponsored by the Poetry Foundation.

Marilyn Nelson is the author or translator of seventeen poetry books and the memoir How I Discovered Poetry (Dial Books, 2014)She is also the author of The Fields Of Praise: New And Selected Poems (Louisiana State Uni. Press, 1997)which won the 1998 Poets’ Prize; Carver: A Life In Poems (Front Street, 2001), winner of the 2001 Boston Globe/Hornbook Award and the Flora Stieglitz Straus Award; as well as Fortune’s Bones (Front Street, 2004)which was a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and won the Lion and the Unicorn Award for Excellence in North American Poetry. Nelson’s honors include two NEA creative writing fellowships, the 1990 Connecticut Arts Award, a Fulbright Teaching Fellowship, a fellowship from the J.S. Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the Frost Medal. She was the Poet Laureate of the State of Connecticut from 2001-2006.

Born in Philadelphia in 1968, Gregory Pardlo is a graduate of Rutgers University, Camden. As an undergraduate, he managed the small jazz club his grandfather owned in nearby Pennsauken, NJ. He received an MFA from NYU as a New York Times Fellow in Poetry in 2001. Pardlo is the author of Air Traffic (Knopf, 2018), a memoir in essay, and translator of Niels Lyngsoe’s, Pencil of Rays and Spiked Mace (Bookthug, 2004). Pardlo’s poetry collections include Digest (Four Way Books, 2014), winner the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and Totem (Copper Canyon Press, 2007), selected by Brenda Hillman for the 2007 American Poetry Review / Honickman Prize. His poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Nation, Ploughshares, Tin House and two editions of Best American Poetry, as well as anthologies including Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry. He is the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship and a fellowship for translation from the National Endowment for the Arts. He has received other fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Lotos Club Foundation and Cave Canem. He is Poetry Editor of Virginia Quarterly Review and currently teaches in the graduate writing program at Rutgers-Camden University.

Chiyuma Elliott is the author of Vigil (Unicorn Press, 2017) and California Winter League (Unicorn Press, 2015). Her poems have appeared in the African American ReviewCallaloo, the Notre Dame Review, the PN Review, and other journals. A former Stegner and Cave Canem Fellow, Chiyuma is an Assistant Professor of African American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.


November 21, 2019
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
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Poetry Foundation
61 W. Superior St.
Chicago, IL 60654 United States
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