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New U.S. Poet Laureate and Mississippi Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey will give her first Mississippi reading as the nation’s 19th Poet Laureate at Delta State University on Tuesday, Sept. 18, at 7 p.m.
"I am thrilled to be returning to Delta State University for my first appearance in Mississippi as U.S. Poet Laureate,” said Trethewey. “Delta State was the first institution to award me an honorary doctorate and so it seems fitting that it is the place for my Mississippi homecoming."
The reading will serve as the Mississippi launch for her new book of poetry Thrall.
Thrall is her poetic follow-up to her Pulitzer Prize winning book Native Guard. Thrall explores many themes of Trethewey’s earlier works. This time, however, she moves beyond the Deep South to meditate on the complicated legacy of colonialism in the Americas; the interaction between memory, historical amnesia, and erasure; and the complex relationship she has with her father.
Trethewey will officially assume her duties as United States Poet Laureate at the Library of Congress on Thursday, September 13th. She is the first Southerner to hold the post since Robert Penn Warren of Tennessee and Kentucky in 1986, and the first African American since Rita Dove in 1993.
The event is free and will be held in Studio A of the Delta Music Institute, located in the old Whitfield Gymnasium on campus, which has also hosted historic speeches by fellow Pulitzer Prize winners William Faulkner and Dean Acheson. Attendees will have the opportunity to purchase a copy of Thrall and have it personally signed by Trethewey immediately following the reading. A selection of her other books will also be available for purchase.
For more information, contact Don Allan Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 662-846-4626 to reserve your free seats today.