Best American Poetry 2017

First Baptist Decatur Sanctuary presented by AJC

Sunday, 3:45-4:30

Edited by Pulitzer Prize-winner and nineteenth US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey, The Best American Poetry 2017 brings together the most notable poems of the year.

Presenters

Jericho Brown

Jericho Brown is the recipient of the Whiting Writers Award and fellowships from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University and the National Endowment for the Arts. His first book, Please (New Issues, 2008), won the American Book Award, and his second book, The New Testament (Copper Canyon, 2014), was named one of the best poetry books of the year by Library Journal. His poems have also appeared in The Nation, The New Republic, The New Yorker, and The Best American Poetry. Brown earned a PhD from the University of Houston, an MFA from the University of New Orleans, and a BA from Dillard University. He is an associate professor in the creative writing program at Emory University.

Judson Mitcham

Judson Mitcham’s poetry has been widely published in literary journals, including Poetry, Harper’s, Georgia Review, Hudson Review, New England Review, and Southern Review. He has been awarded an NEA Fellowship in Creative Writing and has been the recipient of a Pushcart Prize. Mitcham was the first writer to twice win the Townsend Prize for Fiction--for his first novel, The Sweet Everlasting, and for his second, Sabbath Creek. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Georgia in 1974 and taught psychology at Fort Valley State University until his retirement in 2004. He has also served as adjunct professor of creative writing at Mercer University, the University of Georgia, Georgia College & State University, and Emory University, where he directed the Summer Writers’ Institute. His most recent collection of poems is A Little Salvation: Poems Old and New, published by the University of Georgia Press. Mitcham is the current poet laureate of Georgia, and in 2013 he was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame. He lives in Macon with his wife, Jean. They have two children and four grandchildren.

Natasha Trethewey

Natasha Trethewey served two terms as the 19th Poet Laureate of the United States (2012-2014). She is the author of four collections of poetry, Domestic Work (2000), Bellocq’s Ophelia (2002), Native Guard (2006)—for which she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize—and, most recently, Thrall, (2012). Her book of non-fiction, Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, appeared in 2010. She is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Beinecke Library at Yale, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard.

Introducer

Rosemary Magee

Rosemary M. Magee serves as Director of Emory’s Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library (MARBL) overseeing the collection and development of significant literary and historical materials. Magee also chairs the Creativity and Arts Initiative where she has convened a series of multidisciplinary “creativity conversations” which engage a wide range of artists and thinkers such as Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, Robert Spano, Natasha Trethewey, Edward Albee, and others. Previously, she served as Vice President and Secretary at Emory and also as Senior Associate Dean in Emory College of Arts and Sciences. In 2008, Magee received the Thomas Jefferson Award, one of the University’s highest honors. She holds a Ph.D. from Emory and both a B.A. and M.A. from Florida State University. She is a member of the 2005 Leadership Atlanta class.