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Professor Named Poetry Fellow

Author: Tina Joly

Release Date: Jul 09, 2015

ASU professor Dr. Jacqueline Trimble recently returned from a prestigious poetry retreat held for African-American poets.

Jacqueline TrimbleDr. Jacqueline Trimble was selected as a Cave Canem fellow and recently spent time at a retreat that encourages and develops black poets.

Trimble was chosen the first time she applied for the highly selective program.

“Some people apply three or four times before being accepted, but I was lucky enough to be chosen on my first application. I was one of only 12 first-year fellows,” Trimble said.

Trimble, who is chair of the Department of Languages and Literatures and an associate professor of English, said the retreat was an experience of a lifetime.

“We were taught by people who had been nominated for the National Book Award and who had won the Guggenheim prize. We lived in dorms, and we wrote poems and attended workshops and had our poems workshopped by the teacher for that day and the students in our group,” Trimble said.  “The teachers are brilliant, the students are brilliant; the whole experience is as intellectual as it is spiritual. Most of the students have written and published at least one book.  Some of them have published several books and won all sorts of prizes.”

Trimble said the retreat will help her accomplish some of her literary goals.

“That's Cave Canem's point -- to change the American literary canon by developing a space for artists of color to think and write. You have to write a poem a day. It was marvelous. I am working on a collection now, and this really helped me figure out how to finish it,” Trimble said.

The Cave Canem retreat was held June 14-21 at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, Pa. The organization was founded in 1966.


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