American Theater Watch, 2006–2007
Gerald Weales’s “American Theater Watch” appeared in these pages from 1978 until 2010, and we have also featured on occasion his essays and reviews on topics that have included World War II and the early-career political cartoons of one Theodore Geisel (a.k.a. Dr. Seuss). In addition to his distinguished career as an author and drama specialist, Weales was a longtime professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, from which he retired in 1987; a senior Fulbright scholar at the University of Sri Lanka; and the recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship.
The Unwritten Poem
Sharon Dolin is the author of five books of poems, most recently (from the University of Pittsburgh Press) Whirlwind (2012) and Burn and Dodge (2008)—the latter a winner of the AWP Donald Hall Prize in Poetry. Awarded the 2013 Witter Bynner Fellowship from the Library of Congress, Dolin teaches at the Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y and directs the Center for Book Arts Annual Letterpress Poetry Chapbook Competition.
Janisse Ray is the author of five books of literary nonfiction as well as a volume of eco-poetry. Her first book, the best-selling Ecology of a Cracker Childhood (Milkweed Editions, 1999), is a memoir about growing up on a junkyard in the ruined longleaf pine ecosystem of the Southeast. It was a New York Times Notable Book and was chosen by the Georgia Center for the Book as a “Book All Georgians Should Read.” Ray holds an MFA from the University of Montana, where later she was the William Kittredge Distinguished Visiting Writer for 2014. She is a 2015 inductee into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, and she won the 2017 Southern Environmental Law Center Award in journalism for her piece on coal ash, published in The Bitter Southerner: “From Ashes Such as These, What Can Rise?” In 2019 Ray was given the Georgia Author of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award from the Georgia Writers Association.
Margaret Gibson is the current poet laureate of Connecticut and the author of twelve books of poems, all from Louisiana State University Press, most recently Not Hearing the Wood Thrush (2018) and The Glass Globe (forthcoming in 2021), as well as a memoir, The Prodigal Daughter (University of Missouri Press, 2008). The Vigil (1993) was a finalist for the National Book Award in Poetry; Broken Cup (2016) was a finalist for the Poets’ Prize, and its title poem won a Pushcart Prize that year. Gibson is professor emerita at the University of Connecticut.
Alice Friman’s seventh collection of poetry is Blood Weather, forthcoming from Louisiana State University Press in 2019. She’s the winner of a Pushcart Prize and is included in Best American Poetry. New work is forthcoming in Ploughshares, Plume, Shenandoah, Western Humanities Review, and others. She lives in Milledgeville, Georgia, where she was poet-in-residence at Georgia College and State University.
Mr. Thoreau Tonight
David Wagoner has published nineteen books of poems—most recently After the Point of No Return (Copper Canyon Press, 2012)—and ten novels, including The Escape Artist (1965), which Francis Ford Coppola made into a movie in 1982. Winner of the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize and many other honors, he was a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets for twenty-three years, edited Poetry Northwest from 1966 to 2002, and is professor emeritus of English at the University of Washington. He teaches in the low-residency MFA program of the Whidbey Island Writers Workshop.
Robert Cording has published eight collections of poems, most recently Only So Far (CavanKerry Press, 2015) and A Word in My Mouth: Selected Spiritual Poems (Wipf and Stock, 2013). He has received two National Endowment for the Arts fellowships in poetry and two poetry grants from the Connecticut Commission of the Arts. His poems have appeared in numerous publications such as the Nation, the Southern Review, Poetry, the Hudson Review, Kenyon Review, New England Review, Orion, and the New Yorker.