#PoetryNearYou Pick of the Week: Katonah Poetry Series Presents Peter Balakian

On Sunday, June 3, 2018, 4 p.m., the Katonah Poetry Series will welcome Peter Balakian for its season finale. Balakian was recently honored with the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for his collection, Ozone Journal (University of Chicago Press). An acclaimed poet, memoirist, essayist, and cultural critic, he has authored seven volumes of poetry, four non-fiction books and two translations. His work is deeply concerned with his Armenian heritage; the Pulitzer Prize committee said of his work, “In the dynamic, sensual language of these poems, we are reminded that the history of atrocity, trauma and forgetting is both global and ancient . . . But we are reminded, too, of the beauty and richness of culture, and the resilience of love.” His poems have appeared in The NationThe New RepublicAntaeusPartisan ReviewPoetry, and The Kenyon Review and have been widely anthologized. His work has also been translated into more than 12 languages and published internationally.

In addition to his poetry, Balakian has published extensively and to great acclaim as a memoirist, scholar and translator. His memoir Black Dog of Fate won the PEN/Albrand Award; The Burning Tigris: The Armenian Genocide and America’s Response was awarded the Raphael Lemkin Prize and was both a New York Times bestseller and a New York Times notable book. His translation with Aris Sevag of Grigoris Balakian’s Armenian Golgotha: A Memoir of the Armenian Genocide was a Washington Post book of the year. His essays have appeared in such major publications as the New York Times Magazine, The GuardianSlateLA TimesArt In AmericaAmerican Poetry Review, and Poetry. He is the recipient of Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, as well as the Republic of Armenia's Presidential and Movses Khorenatsi Medals, and the Spendlove Prize in Social Justice, Democracy and Tolerance. Born and raised in New Jersey, Balakian received his B.A., M. A., and PhD degrees from Bucknell University, New York University and Brown. He currently teaches at Colgate University where he is the Donald M. and Constance H. Rebar Professor of the Humanities and Director of Creative Writing. 

Doors open at 3:30 p.m. The reading will be followed by audience Q&A, a public reception, and book signing with the poet. Copies of Balakian’s books will be available for sale, as well the newly published How a Poem Can Happen: Interviews with Twenty-One Extraordinary Poets (Red Spruce Press)—a collection of KPS poet interviews conducted by Andrew Kuhn between 2010-2016. 

The Katonah Village Library is located at 26 Bedford Road, an easy walk from the MetroNorth train station. Street parking is available. For further information and exclusive interviews of current KPS poets, please visit www.katonahpoetry.com. The Katonah Poetry Series has been showcasing the world’s best poets for over fifty years.

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