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UW MFA Creative Writing Program Welcomes Eminent Writer in Residence Ed Roberson

September 2, 2011
Ed Roberson

Poet Ed Roberson is the second 2011-2012 Eminent Writer in Residence in the University of Wyoming MFA Program in Creative Writing. He comes to campus Sept. 10.

A reception for Roberson, the Distinguished Artist in Residence at Northwestern University, is at 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, in the UW Art Museum. He will read from his works at 5:30 p.m. and sign books afterward. The event is free and open to the public. Roberson also will give a reading in Jackson, sponsored by the Teton County Public Library, Friday, Sept. 16.

During his two-week UW residency, Roberson will visit university classes, consult on manuscripts with graduate creative writing students and discuss writing careers with a wide range of campus members. Roberson's residency will be followed in February by nonfiction writer John D'Agata. Previous Eminent Writers in Residence include Edward P. Jones, Claudia Rankine, Joy Williams and others.

Roberson received the Lila Wallace Writers' Award and the 2008 Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America. He also is the acclaimed author of eight books of poetry, including "Voices Cast Out to Talk Us In" (1995), winner of the Iowa Poetry Prize, and "To See the Earth Before the End of the World," Roberson's most recent collection that was published last fall. His poetry also has been anthologized in "The Best American Poetry 2004" and "Primary Trouble: an Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry" (1996).

Roberson has worked throughout the world, including Alaska, Afognak Island, Bermuda, the Peruvian and Ecuadorian Andes, Mexico, Nigeria, West Africa, the Caribbean and the Amazon jungle. Such travels inspire poems that, according to Reginald Gibbons, encompass "startling and just metaphors" and "acrobatic leaps and counter-leaps of thought."

"Ed Roberson is in a school of precisely one. His work is utterly unique, challenging, deeply serious and richly musical," says UW Associate Professor Kate Northrop. "As is the case when one encounters excellent work, I find myself unsure how to respond, how to go about my daily life, after reading his poems. I'm stunned by them."

For more information about the Eminent Writer in Residence program, visit the MFA website at or email Gwynn Lemler at

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