Plymouth, N.H.–The Eagle Pond Authors’ Series at Plymouth State University will host a reading by former U.S. Poet Laureate Charles Simic at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 14 at the Silver Center for the Arts.
Simic has written more than 60 books, including the poetry collections What the Grass Says, The World Doesn’t End (Pulitzer Prize winner), Walking the Blackcat, Jackstraws, The Voice at 3:00 AM, My Noiseless Entourage and most recently, That Little Something.
Simic writes with a dark sense of humor and a keen eye for the surreal. He was appointed U.S. Poet Laureate in 2007 at which time Librarian of Congress James H. Billington said, “The range of Charles Simic’s imagination is evident in his stunning and unusual imagery. He handles language with the skill of a master craftsman, yet his poems are easily accessible, often meditative and surprising. He has given us a rich body of highly organized poetry with shades of darkness and flashes of ironic humor.” Simic responded that he was honored to be selected “because I am an immigrant boy who didn’t speak English until I was 15.”
Simic was born in Belgrade, Yugoslavia in 1938 and emigrated to the U.S. in 1954. His childhood was informed in part by the events of World War II. His first poems were published when he was 21; his first collection, What the Grass Says, in 1967, the year after he graduated from New York University with a degree in Russian. The interruption was caused by a stint in the U.S. Army as a draftee.
Simic has also published numerous translations of French, Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian and Slovenian poetry, and is the author of several books of essays and anthologies.
His many awards include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Since 1973 Simic has lived in New Hampshire where he was Professor of English (now emeritus) at the University of New Hampshire for 34 years.
Free tickets for Simic’s Plymouth reading are available at the Silver Center Box Office, (603) 535-ARTS (2787) or (800) 779-3869. The reading will be followed by a reception.
The Series is sponsored by the Plymouth State University Bookstore and the Follett Higher Education Group.
The Eagle Pond Authors’ Series is named in honor of Donald Hall, who lives at Eagle Pond Farm in Wilmot, a family homestead that has inspired much of his writing.