Contact: Michael Traupman, Executive Director College Relations, 610-740-3790
Karen Passino, Student Assistant


Allentown, PA (September 22, 2008) - Poet and nonfiction writer Mark Doty, the only American to have won Great Britain’s T.S. Eliot Prize, will read selections from his recent works on Thursday, October 2, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. in the 1867 Room of the Tompkins College Center. A reception and booksigning by this award winning author will follow.

Doty is the author of seven books of poems, one of which, Fire to Fire, will be featured at his reading. Fire to Fire collects the best of Doty's poetry, as well as a selection of new works. Fire to Fire speaks of mortality, beauty of the world, power of desire, dignity and art giving shape to human lives. Doty’s topics show 20 years of growth through his poems echoing the crises and potential of our world.

Doty will also read from About Dog Years, A Memoir. This piece captures the love of two dogs, Arden and Beau, who sustained him during times of his most grievous losses and how he nursed them through their years of worsening health. While attending to Arden and Beau, Doty came to realize that he, in fact, was the one being cared for. Through emotional stories of typical and strange behavior, Doty’s reflections show the cherished connection between man and pet.

Doty is the winner of many awards including the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Among these awards are two NEA fellowships, Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundation Fellowships, a Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Award, and the Witter Byner Prize. He has written Swan (1987), My Alexandria (1993), Atlantis (1995), Sweet Machine (1998), Source (2001), and the most recent critically acclaimed volume of poems, School of the Arts (2005). He is the author of the memoirs Heaven's Coast (1996) and Firebird (1999). His interest in the visual arts is clear not only in his poems but also in his book-length essay “Still Life with Oysters and Lemon” (2001).

Doty now teaches in the graduate program the University of Houston, and is a frequent guest at Columbia University, Hunter College, and NYU. He lives in Houston and in New York City.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact Dr. Carolyn Segal at 610-437-4471 ext. 3394.


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