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Poet Mary Szybist

Caldwell, N.J., March 28, 2018 – Poet Mary Szybist will headline the launch for this year’s issue of Presence: A Journal of Catholic Poetry, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Thurs. April 19 at Caldwell University. Szybist’s collection “Incarnadine” won the 2013 National Book Award for Poetry.  Szybist will read with her husband, poet Jerry Harp, whose book “Spirit Under Construction” appeared in fall 2017.  The event is free and open to the public and will be held in the Jennings Library on campus.

Presence: A Journal of Catholic Poetry is a venue for publication of new poetry written by authors whose work is informed by the Catholic faith.  The editor is Mary Ann B. Miller, professor and chair of English at Caldwell University.

“We are very grateful to Szybist for agreeing to be interviewed in the second annual issue of Presence and to Harp for contributing two poems to the collection.  We are happy to be able to provide a venue in which the community can hear more about their work and its connection to the work of the journal,” said Miller.

Szybist is the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center, and the Witter Bynner Foundation in conjunction with the Library of Congress.  Her first book “Granted” was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.  She lives in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches at Lewis & Clark College.

Harp’s books of poems include “Creature” (Salt Publishing, 2003) and “Spirit under Construction” (NeoPoiesis Press, 2017). He is also the author of“For Us, What Music? The Life and Poetry of Donald Justice” (U. of Iowa Press, 2010). His essays and reviews appear regularly in Pleiades. He also teaches at Lewis & Clark College.

Students in Miller’s undergraduate Journal Editing class read poems submitted for possible publication in the journal each fall in conjunction with the journal’s submission period.   Miller is editor of “St. Peter’s B-list: Contemporary Poems Inspired by the Saints”(Ave Maria Press, 2014), a collection of over 100 poems, written by 70 poets from across the USA.  She guest-edited the fall 2015 issue of the women’s literary journal, Adannawhich is a specially-themed issue devoted to Women and Spirituality.