Mark Jarman
January 2014


Mark JarmanMark Jarman is Centennial Professor of English at Vanderbilt University. He is the author of eleven books of poetry: North Sea, The Rote Walker, Far and Away, The Black Riviera, Iris, Questions for Ecclesiastes, Unholy Sonnets, To the Green Man, Epistles, and Bone Fires: New and Selected Poems. With David Mason, he has edited Rebel Angels: 25 Poets of the New Formalism. Jarmanís awards include a Joseph Henry Jackson Award for his poetry, three grants in poetry from the NEA, and a fellowship in poetry from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. His book The Black Riviera won the 1991 Poetsí Prize. Questions for Ecclesiastes won the 1998 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets and The Nation magazine. His poetry and essays have been published widely in such periodicals and journals as The American Poetry Review, The Gettysburg Review, The Hudson Review, The New Yorker, Poetry, and The Southern Review. He has published two collections of essays and reviews, The Secret of Poetry and Body and Soul: Essays on Poetry. He makes his home in Nashville, Tennessee with his fellow Angeleno, the soprano Amy Kane Jarman. They have two grown daughters, Claire and ZoŽ.

Statement of Poetics

Poetry originates for me in two places that are indelible parts of my memory, and even more than that, fertile sources for poetry itself. One is the area of Southern California stretching up the coast from Santa Monica Bay to Santa Barbara and inland to the Santa Maria Valley. The other is Fife, Scotland, on the north side of the Firth of Forth, and not the picturesque Fife of the East Neuk and St. Andrews, but the industrial region of Kirkcaldy and its neighborhood. My childhood was divided between these places as are the four poems here.


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