Kenyon Review Reading Series

All events sponsored in whole or in part by the Kenyon College English Department, GLCA New Writers Award, Ohio Arts Council, the Kenyon Review, and the KR Associates Program.

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Fall 2015

September 15th

Maggie Smith
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Smith-WebMaggie Smith’s second book, The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison (Tupelo Press, 2015), was selected by Kimiko Hahn as the winner of the Dorset Prize. She is also the author of Lamp of the Body (Red Hen Press, 2005), winner of the Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award, and three prizewinning chapbooks, the latest of which is Disasterology (Dream Horse Press, 2015). Her poems have appeared in the Paris Review, Gettysburg Review, Iowa Review, Southern Review, Virginia Quarterly Review and elsewhere. Among Smith’s awards are fellowships and prizes from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ohio Arts Council, the Academy of American Poets, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and the Sustainable Arts Foundation.

October 2nd

Reading by Tarfia Faizullah and David James Poissant
Time 8:00pm, Peirce Lounge, Peirce Hall

Tarfia Faizullah’s poetry has appeared in Poetry Magazine, Kenyon Review, New England Review, and elsewhere. Her poetry collection, Seam, won the 2015 Great Lakes Colleges Association’s New Writers Award for poetry.

David James Poissant’s writing has been featured in Best New American Voices, the Atlantic, and the New York Times, among others. His debut story collection, The Heaven of Animals, won the 2015 Great Lakes Colleges Association’s New Writers Award for fiction.

October 3rd

The Denham Sutcliffe Memorial Lecture: An Evening with Roger Rosenblatt
Time 8:00pm, Brandi Recital Hall, Storer Hall

rosenblattRoger Rosenblatt is the author of seventeen books, including New York Times Notable Books Kayak Morning and The Boy Detective, as well as other national bestsellers Unless It Moves the Human Heart, Making Toast, Rules for Aging, and Children of War, which won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. His essays for Time and The NewsHour on PBS have won two George Polk Awards, the Peabody, and the Emmy. He is currently Distinguished Professor of English and Writing at Stony Brook University.

October 17th

Jill Bialosky
10:30am, Cheever Room, Finn House

Bialosky_JillJill Bialosky is the author of four poetry collections: The Players; The End of Desire; Subterranenan, a finalist for the James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets; and Intruder, a finalist for the 2009 Paterson Poetry Prize. She coedited Wanting a Child and has written three novels, The Prize, House Under Snow, and The Life Room. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed New York Times bestseller History of A Suicide: My Sister’s Unfinished Life which was a finalist for the Ohioana Award and Books For Better Life Award. It was also selected as one of Entertainment Weekly’s Best Books of the Year. Her poems and essays have been published in many magazines including The New Yorker, The Nation, Redbook, O, The Oprah Magazine, Real Simple, Kenyon Review, Antioch Review, The New Republic, Paris Review, Poetry, and The American Poetry Review. She lives in New York City where she is an Executive Editor and Vice President at W.W.Norton. Learn more at

October 20th

Jaimy Gordon
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Gordon-WebJaimy Gordon’s fourth novel, Lord of Misrule, won the National Book Award for Fiction in 2010, and was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award; it also won the Tony Ryan Award for the year’s best book about horse racing. Gordon’s previous novels include Bogeywoman, a Los Angeles Times Best Book for 2000, and She Drove Without Stopping, which brought her an Academy-Institute Award from the American Institute of Arts and Letters. She also translates from the German, especially the fiction of Maria Beig. She teaches in the Prague Summer Program for Writers.

October 29th

Writers on Writing: Michael Hodges
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Hodges-webMichael H. Hodges covers art and culture for the Detroit News, where he’s worked since 1991. His first journalism job was at the Daily Journal in Caracas, Venezuela in 1979. Before returning to his hometown, Hodges spent one entertaining year at the New York Post. While in N.Y., he also worked part-time as a speechwriter for Richard C. Holbrooke, President Clinton’s ambassador to the United Nations. Hodges graduated from Tufts University with a degree in political science (he now wishes he’d done history), and got his master’s in international affairs from Columbia University. With the newspaper industry going the way of the dodo, Hodges has branched into photography and architectural history. Wayne State University Press published his coffee-table book, Michigan’s Historic Railroad Stations, in 2012, which the State Library named one of the best books of the year. Hodges is currently at work on a project about Detroit architect Albert Kahn.

November 2nd

Natalie Diaz
7:00pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Natalie Diaz was born and raised in the Fort Mojave Indian Village in Needles, California, on the banks of the Colorado River. She is Mojave and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Tribe. Her first poetry collection, When My Brother Was an Aztec, was published by Copper Canyon Press. She is a Lannan Literary Fellow and a Native Arts Council Foundation Artist Fellow. In 2104, she was awarded a Bread Loaf Fellowship, the Holmes National Poetry Prize, a Hodder Fellowship, and a PEN/Civitella Ranieri Foundation Residency, as well as being awarded a US Artists Ford Fellowship. Diaz teaches at the Institute of American Indian Arts Low Rez MFA program and lives in Mohave Valley, Arizona, where she directs the Fort Mojave Language Recovery Program, working with the last remaining speakers at Fort Mojave to teach and revitalize the Mojave language.

November 12th

Philip Metres
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Metres-WebPhilip Metres is the author of Sand Opera (2015), A Concordance of Leaves (2013), abu ghraib arias (2011), and To See the Earth (2008) among others. A two-time recipient of the NEA and the Arab American Book Award, he is professor of English at John Carroll University. Find out more about Metres at

Spring 2016

February 16th

Danielle Evans
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Danielle Evans is the author of the short-story collection Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self, which was a co-winner of the 2011 PEN American Robert W. Bingham Prize for a first book, a National Book Foundation 5 under 35 selection for 2011, the winner of the 2011 Paterson Prize for Fiction and the 2011 Hurston-Wright award for fiction, and an honorable mention for the 2011 PEN/Hemingway award. It was named one of the best books of 2010 by Kirkus Reviews and O Magazine, and longlisted for The Story Prize. Her work has appeared in magazines including the Paris Review, A Public Space, Callaloo, and Phoebe, and has been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories 2008 and 2010, and in New Stories from the South. She received an MFA in fiction from the Iowa Writers Workshop, was the 2006-2007 Carol Houck Smith fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, taught literature and creative writing at American University in Washington DC, and now teaches in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

February 23rd

Daniel Torday
4:10pm, Peirce Lounge

Torday-1-copySt. Martin’s Press published Daniel Torday’s debut novel, The Last Flight of Poxl West, in 2015. It was reviewed on the cover of the New York Times Book Review, and in the daily Times Michiko Kakutani said the novel “announces Torday’s emergence as a writer deserving of attention.” Torday’s novella, The Sensualist, won the 2012 National Jewish Book Award for debut fiction. He is the director of creative writing at Bryn Mawr College.

February 29th

Writers on Writing: Arshad Mohammed
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Arshad Mohammed covers U.S. foreign policy for Reuters from a base at the State Department. He joined Reuters in 1988 and has worked as a correspondent in New York, Paris, Algiers and Washington, where he has covered the White House (1996-2002) and the State Department (2002-2005, 2006-present). His Washington assignments have entailed extensive travel with the president and the secretary of state.
Mohammed was at the White House on Dec. 19, 1998 when the House of Representatives voted to impeach President Bill Clinton and in the Florida classroom on 9/11 when President George W. Bush learned of the second plane to hit the World Trade Center. He was born and mostly raised in Washington, D.C.

April 19th

Gretchen Henderson
4:10pm, Cheever Room, Finn House

Gretchen_Henderson-WebGretchen E. Henderson’s latest book is Ugliness: A Cultural History (Reaktion Books of London/University of Chicago Press). Her books include two novels, The House Enters the Street (finalist for the AWP Award Series) and Galerie de Difformité (winner of the Madeleine Plonsker Prize), among collections of nonfiction and poetry. Her writings have appeared in a wide range of journals, including the Kenyon Review, Iowa Review, Southern Review, and Ploughshares, as well as collaboratively deformed across the arts and performed as opera. Her fellowships include a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Humanities from MIT and this year’s Hodson-JCB Fellowship at Brown University and Washington College. Gretchen teaches at Georgetown University and is an Affiliated Scholar at Kenyon College, where she also teaches in the Kenyon Review Writers’ Workshop.

April 28th

Poem in Your Pocket Day

Every year at Kenyon, we put our own spin on national Poem in Your Pocket Day, a celebration of poetry, community, and the art of reading out loud. This year, Poem in Your Pocket Day festivities will feature readings by Adam Clay, Richie Hofmann, Marcus Jackson and Natalie Shapero. We’ll also celebrate the work of the Kenyon Review Student Associates’ 1939 Press.

Adam Clay’s most recent book is Stranger (Milkweed Editions, 2016). His poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Crab Orchard Review, Boston Review, Iowa Review, and elsewhere. A co-editor of TYPO Magazine, he serves as a Book Review Editor for the Kenyon Review and teaches at the University of Illinois Springfield.

Richie Hofmann is the author of Second Empire (Alice James Books, 2015), winner of the Beatrice Hawley Award. He is the recipient of a Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowship, and his poems appear in The New Yorker, Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, New Republic, and Poetry. He is a doctoral candidate in English at Emory University and edits Lightbox (, an online educational resource for students and teachers of poetry.

Marcus Jackson was born in Toledo, Ohio. He earned a BA from the University of Toledo and continued his poetry studies at NYU and as a Cave Canem fellow. His poems have appeared in such publications as American Poetry Review, Harvard Review, and The New Yorker. His first collection of poetry, Neighborhood Register, was released in 2011. He lives with his wife and son in Columbus, where he teaches in the creative writing program at the Ohio State University.

Natalie Shapero is the Professor of the Practice of Poetry at Tufts University and an Editor at Large of the Kenyon Review. Her first poetry collection, No Object, was published by Saturnalia Books in 2013, and her second is forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press. Natalie’s writing has appeared in The New Yorker, New Republic, Poetry, The Progressive, and elsewhere.

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