Robert Bly Reads at Plymouth State

February 27th, 2004 by Adam

Robert Bly will present a reading at Plymouth State University Sunday, March 7 at 3 p.m. The free program is a presentation of the Eagle Pond Authors’ Series. It will held in the multipurpose room of the Hartman Union Building, on High Street.

New Hampshire poet laureate Cynthia Huntington says, “Bly’s influence on American poetry in the last half of the 20th century has been incalculable. His poems and criticism remain alive and provocative over decades of examination. Through his own poems, his introduction of new poets, and his translations of South American and European writers he helped to reshape the landscape of poetry for several generations of readers and writers.”

Bly was born in Minnesota in 1926. He attended Harvard University and received his M.A. from the University of Iowa in 1956. As the editor of the magazine The Sixties (begun as The Fifties), Bly introduced many unknown European and South American poets to an American audience. He has also edited numerous collections and nonfiction books.

Bly’s honors include Guggenheim, Rockefeller, and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships.

The Eagle Pond Authors’ Series is named in honor of Donald Hall, who lives at Eagle Pond Farm in Wilmot, a family homestead which has inspired much of his writing. In an interview by Francis Quinn for the April 2000 Paris Review, Bly talked about his friendship with Donald Hall and the importance of interacting with other writers. He said, “Donald Hall and I have been sending poems back and forth twice a week for 40 years. … My generation did a lot with letters. Galway Kinnell and Louis Simpson and Don and I and James Wright would often send five- and six-page typed letters commenting on and arguing with each others’ poems. … The gist of it is that no one writes alone: One needs a community.” Hall will introduce his friend at the reading.

Tickets for the Eagle Pond Authors’ Series are free, but seating is limited. Call the Box Office at 535-ARTS for reservations. Box office hours are Monday through Friday, noon – 6 p.m. A reception and book signing follow the reading, which is presented by Plymouth State University and sponsored by the Barnes and Noble Bookstore at PSU.

The final reader in the 2003-2004 series will be Frank X. Gaspar, Sunday, April 18 at 3 p.m.