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CSM Welcomes Poets Martin Espada and Lauren Marie Schmidt To Connections Literary Series Sept. 15

September 9, 2022

College of Southern Maryland (CSM) welcomes poets Martin Espada and Lauren Marie Schmidt to its fall Connections Literary Series Sept. 15 for an afternoon of poetry reading and discussion. The public is welcome to hear from the poets in person, or via Zoom during this free event.

Espada has published more than 20 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 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.  

Since it began in 1990, CSM’s Connection Literary Series has featured writers such as National Book Award winners Tim O'Brien and Robert Stone, Pulitzer Prize winning poets Yusef Komunyakaa and Henry Taylor, and Maryland Poet Laureates Lucille Clifton and Michael Glaser. Connections readings offer the Southern Maryland community a chance to hear from and meet established and emerging local writers up-close-and-personal. Previous Readings are available on our YouTube playlist.

The Sept. 15, free event starts at noon at the La Plata Campus, Community Education (CE Building) Room 101. RSVP’s are required to access Zoom information. Register at https://csmd.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIlfuiurDMsEtKDEvr9uaiLcsEUUVjvVbmT.

Learn more about both poets at www.martinespada.net or www.laurenmarieschmidt.com.

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