Our Autumn 2017 poets
Summer seemed to slip by us in the South so we’re hoping for an exceptionally mild, warm and windless autumn. A friend just rang me and said she enjoyed this “Mother ” edition. I was puzzled until I sat quietly and looked at the card as a whole and realised that yes there is a theme running throughout the card. I tend to be so busy securing the poems I want, and then making sure their placement is correct and everything is all ok for the printer I forget about the big picture. Now all 8050 cards are distributed, or they will be by tomorrow, I can sit back and enjoy the poems. I hope you do too – Ruth.
Aalix Roake is a poet and artist living in New Zealand. She writes primarily Japanese poetry forms and has been published world-wide in magazines and anthologies and has won numerous awards. The haiku published in this issue of PitWR won First Place in the HaikuWorld Shiki Kukai.
Barbara Crooker is the author of eight books of poetry, including Les Fauves (C&R Press, 2017) and The Book of Kells (Cascade Books, 2019). Radiance, her first book, won the 2005 Word Press First Book Award and was finalist for the 2006 Paterson Poetry Prize; Line Dance, her second book, won the 2009 Paterson Award for Excellence in Literature. Her writing has received a number of awards, including the 2004 WB Yeats Society of New York Award, the 2003 Thomas Merton Poetry of the Sacred Award, and three Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Creative Writing Fellowships. Her work appears in a variety of literary journals and anthologies, including CommonWealth: Contemporary Poets on Pennsylvania and The Bedford Introduction to Literature.
Daniel Mark Epstein is a biographer, poet, and dramatist whose work has been widely published and performed. Born in Washington, D.C. in 1948, he was educated at Kenyon College. In the 1970s his poetry first appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, and The New Republic. His first volume of poems was published by Liveright in 1973. His plays appeared soon thereafter in regional theater and Off-Broadway, and in 1978 he received the Prix de Rome for his poetry and dramatic works.
In the 1980s he wrote his first biography, Sister Aimee: The Life of Aimee Semple McPherson, now in its fourth printing. His biography Nat King Cole was a 1999 New York Times Notable Book, reviewed on the cover of the NYT Book Review, and his biography of Edna St. Vincent Millay was a New York Public Library Honoree, “Books to Remember” for 2001. The Lincolns: Portrait of a Marriage, was named one of the Best Books of 2008 by both The Wall Street Journal and The Chicago Sun-Times.
His honors include a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship in 1974, a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1984, and an Academy Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2006.
Elena de Roo is an Auckland children’s writer and poet. In 2010 she was awarded the Todd New Writers’ bursary to write a collection of children’s poems. A number of these poems are included in A Treasury of NZ Poems for Children, edited by Paula Green. Elena’s other works include The Rain Train (illustrated by Brian Lovelock), the Ophelia Wild series (illustrated by Tracy Duncan) and The Name at the End of the Ladder – a junior fantasy novel.
Emilie Buchwald is the cofounder of Milkweed Editions and founder of Gryphon Press. Buchwald earned a PhD from the University of Minnesota, from which she has also received an honorary degree. She is the author and editor of many books and anthologies, including Gildaen (Milkweed, 1993). She has received several awards, including the McKnight Distinguished Artist Award, the Kay Sexton Award, and the Ivan Sandroff Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Book Critics Circle.
Emma Neale works in Dunedin as a freelance editor and runs creative writing workshops. She has published five novels and four volumes of poetry, as well as editing three anthologies. She has won a number of fellowships and awards, and the manuscript The Truth Garden won the Kathleen Grattan Poetry Award 2011.
Freya Manfred is the author of eight books of poetry. Her two most recent are Swimming With A Hundred Year Old Snapping Turtle, which won the 2009 Midwest Booksellers’ Choice Award, and Speak, Mother, 2015, both from Red Dragonfly Press. A longtime Midwesterner who has also lived on both coasts, her poems have appeared in over 100 reviews and magazines and 45 anthologies. She’s a recipient of a Harvard/Radcliffe Fellowship and an NEA Grant, among other awards. Poet Robert Bly says, “What I like in her poems is that they are not floating around in the air or the intellect. The body takes them in. They are brave.The reader and the writer meet each other in the body.”Her first memoir, Frederick Manfred: A Daughter Remembers, was nominated for a Minnesota Book Award and an Iowa Historical Society Award. She lives north of Stillwater with her husband, screenwriter, Tom Pope, and their sons, award-winning visual artists Nicholas Bly Pope and Ethan Rowan Pope, have illustrated some of her poetry, and are the subjects of her second memoir, Raising Twins: A True Life Adventure, 2015 (Nodin Press). www.freyamanfredwriter.com
Karen Peterson Butterworth’s poetry and prose have appeared in journals and anthologies in seven countries. She has published seven books as writer or editor: most recently (as co-editor with Nola Borrell) the taste of nashi:New Zealand Haiku . Karen now lives in Otaki and themes for her writing come to her while observing human behaviour or gazing at the sunlit leaves of trees she has planted and watched grow over a quarter century.
Linda Pastan was raised in New York City but has lived for most of her life in Potomac, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, DC. In her senior year at Radcliffe College, Pastan won the Mademoiselle poetry prize (Sylvia Plath was the runner-up). Immediately following graduation, however, she decided to give up writing poetry in order to concentrate on raising her family. After ten years at home, her husband urged her to return to poetry. Since the early 1970s, Pastan has produced quiet lyrics that focus on themes like marriage, parenting, and grief. She is interested in the anxieties that exist under the surface of everyday life. She lives in Potomac, Maryland.
Pat Schneider was born in rural Missouri in 1934 and is the author of nine books of poetry. She received her MFA from the University of Massachusetts, and founded Amherst Writers & Artists, a non-profit corporation which sponsors outreach writing workshops and retreats for “traditionally silenced populations,” including low-income women and children.
Schneider’s collections of poetry include White River Junction (1987), Long Way Home (1993), Olive Street Transfer (1999), and The Patience of Ordinary Things (2003). Her work has appeared in many anthologies including Family Reunion (2003), There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays (1997), and Alphabestiary (1995).
Schneider’s poetry often explores racial and class-related issues in realistic scenarios. Don Junkins, while reviewing her book, Another River: New and Selected Poems, writes: “Pat Schneider’s poems cut through to the real world…She not only knows how to write, seemingly without effort, articulate and precise lies, she’s lean in language and abundant in content. Hers is a genuine voice expressed in informed craft, which to be really effective includes the management of tone, which itself depends entirely on the management of restraint.”
Schneider has taught at the University of Massachusetts, the University of Connecticut, Smith College and is an adjunct faculty member at the Graduate Theological Union and Pacific School of Religion. She resides in Amherst, Massachusetts with her husband.