Chestertown, MD, January 28, 2004 — Washington College's Sophie Kerr Lecture Series presents poet Michael Waters, professor of English at Salisbury University, reading from his works, Thursday, February 12, at 4:30 p.m. in the Sophie Kerr Room of the College's Miller Library. The event is free and the public is invited to attend. “I cannot call to mind anyone of Waters' generation who is currently writing better poetry,” said critic Floyd Collins of Waters in The Gettysburg Review. A prolific poet whose works have appeared in such distinguished journals as Poetry, Antioch Review and The Yale Review, Waters is the recipient of two Pushcart Prizes and has been awarded several fellowships in creative writing. His recent books include Parthenopi: New and Selected Poems (BOA Editions, 2001), Green Ash, Red Maple, Black Gum (BOA Editions, 1997) and Bountiful (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1992). He also has edited several volumes, including Contemporary American Poetry (Houghton Mifflin, 2001) and Perfect in Their Art (Southern Illinois University Press, 2003). Waters' poetry has been called vivid and sensual, willing to embrace humanity's imperfections and to speak of love, loss and emotional aftermaths.
Born in Brooklyn, NY, Waters attended SUNY-Brockport (B.A., M.A.), the University of Nottingham, the University of Iowa (M.F.A.), and Ohio University (Ph.D.). He has taught in the creative writing programs at Ohio University and the University of Maryland, has served as a Visiting Professor of American Literature at the University of Athens, Greece, and was as a Banister Writer-in-Residence at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. He has taught at Salisbury University since 1978.
The reading is sponsored by the Sophie Kerr Lecture Series, named in honor of the late Sophie Kerr, a writer from Denton, MD, whose generosity has done so much to enrich Washington College's literary culture. When she died in 1965, she left the bulk of her estate to the College, specifying that one half of the income from her bequest be awarded every year to the senior showing the most “ability and promise for future fulfillment in the field of literary endeavor” and the other half be used to bring visiting writers to campus, to fund scholarships, and to help defray the costs of student publications.