Connections Literary Series: Martin Espada and Lauren Marie Schmidt

September 15, 2022
12:00 PM - 02:00 PM
La Plata Campus, Community Education (CE Building), Room 101

martin espada book coverMartín Espada has published more than twenty books as a poet, editor, essayist and translator. His new book of poems from Norton, Floaters, is the winner of the 2021 National Book Award. Among his other poetry collections are Vivas to Those Who Have Failed (2016), The Trouble Ball (2011), The Republic of Poetry (2006), Alabanza (2003), A Mayan Astronomer in Hell’s Kitchen (2000), Imagine the Angels of Bread (1997), City of Coughing and Ashes (1993), and Rebellion is the Circle of a Lover’s Hands (1990). He is the editor of What Saves Us: Poems of Empathy and Outrage in the Age of Trump (2019). In addition to the National Book Award, he has received the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the Shelley Memorial Award, the Robert Creeley Award, an Academy of American Poets Fellowship, the PEN/Revson Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship. The Republic of Poetry was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His book of essays and poems, Zapata’s Disciple (1998), was banned in Tucson as part of the Mexican-American Studies Program outlawed by the state of Arizona, and reissued by Northwestern. A former tenant lawyer in Greater Boston, Espada is a professor of English at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

lauren marie schmidt book coverLauren Marie Schmidt is the author of Filthy Labors and three previous collections of poetry: Two Black Eyes and a Patch of Hair Missing; The Voodoo Doll Parade, selected for the Main Street Rag Author’s Choice Chapbook Series; and Psalms of The Dining Room, a sequence of poems about her volunteer experience at a soup kitchen in Eugene, Oregon. Her work has appeared in journals such as North American Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Rattle, Nimrod, Painted Bride Quarterly, PANK, New York Quarterly, Bellevue Literary Review, The Progressive, and others. Her awards include the So to Speak Poetry Prize, the Neil Postman Prize for Metaphor, The Janet B. McCabe Prize for Poetry, and the Bellevue Literary Review’s Vilcek Prize for Poetry. Schmidt is currently at work on a Young Adult novel. 

Filthy Labors, chronicles her volunteer teaching experience at a transitional housing program for homeless women in her native New Jersey.  “Lauren Marie Schmidt gets better and better.  In Filthy Labors she’s given us equal parts grit and elegance. The poems are about encounters with people who have stumbled into the dark in their lives.  A collection that will often be read in one setting, there is no poem that is not superbly turned, full of dark wit, and powered by heart.”  --Doug Anderson.

Connections Literary Series

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