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Award-winning poets Tracy K. Smith and Farnaz Fatemi will be featured in the Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize Reading Series on Thursday, Oct. 20 at 7 p.m. in Kent State University’s Kiva Auditorium. The reading is funded by generous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. This event is free and open to the public. No tickets are required.
Smith received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in poetry for her third book of poems, Life on Mars. The collection draws upon the genre of science fiction in considering who we humans are and what the vast universe holds for us. In poems of political urgency, tenderness, elegy and wit, Smith conjures version upon version of the future, imagines the afterlife, and contemplates life here on Earth in our institutions, cities, houses and hearts. Life on Mars was a New York Times Notable Book, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, and a New Yorker, Library Journal and Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year.
Farnaz Fatemi is an Iranian-American poet, editor and writing teacher in Santa Cruz, California. Her debut book, Sister Tongue, won the 2021 Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize (selected by Tracy K. Smith) and is available from The Kent State University Press. She is a member and co-founder of The Hive Poetry Collective, which presents a weekly radio show and podcast in Santa Cruz County and hosts readings and poetry-related events. Her poetry and prose appears in Poets.org (Poem-a-Day), Pedestal Magazine, Grist Journal, Catamaran Literary Reader, Crab Orchard Review, SWWIM Every Day, Tahoma Literary Review, Tupelo Quarterly and phren-z.org. Fatemi’s work is also included in several anthologies, including Essential Voices: Poetry of Iran and its Diaspora, My Shadow Is My Skin: Voices of the Iranian Diaspora and The Breakbeat Poets Vol. 3: Halal If You Hear Me.