The University of Maine at Fort Kent Presidential Series committee will present the award-winning poet and Fort Kent native, Dr. Connie Voisine, as its guest speaker on Friday, March 8 at 7 p.m. in the Nadeau Hall Teleconference Room.
Ms. Voisine will talk to her audience of students, faculty, staff and community members about the creating writing process and her poetry. She will read some of her poetry, as well.
Connie Voisine is an associate professor of English at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, New Mexico, where she directs the creative writing program. She is a 1982 graduate of Community High School in Fort Kent.
Her first book, Cathedral of the North, won the Association of Writers & Writing Programs Award Series in Poetry and was released by the University of Pittsburgh Press in 2001. Her second book, Rare High Meadow of Which I Might Dream, published by the University of Chicago Press in 2008, and was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award.
Voisine's poems often feature speakers as they encounter contemporary culture in a variety of locations, including the U.S. Southwest and Mexico. Rare High Meadow of Which I Might Dream also was influenced by medieval literature and the poetry of Marie de France.
In addition to her two published books of poetry, Voisine also has published five poem anthologies: Love Poems Out Loud, Algonquin Books, spring 2007; French Connection, anthology on Francophone literature in the U.S., Louisiana State University Press, spring 2007; Just Outside the Frame, I Made a Book, and Prayer for New Mexico, Tres Chicas Press, fall 2005; The Maine Poets, the poems Hungry, Booming the Lake, Down East Books, 2003, paperback, 2006; and A Fine Excess, the poem Psalm, Sarabande Press, 2001.
Voisine is the winner of numerous awards and prizes, including the Pushcart Prize honoring the best poetry published by small presses, Honorable Mention, (2012); the Fulbright Award from Queen's University, Belfast, Northern Ireland (2012); and the Joseph Campbell Award in Poetry (2004).
Voisine earned a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies from Yale University (1987). She completed a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the University of California at Irvine (1994), and received a doctorate in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Utah (2000).
The UMFK Presidential Lecture Series was launched to provide a platform for intellectual discourse among campus community participants, as part of UMFK's Strategic Plan for Excellence. The Series, which is aimed at fostering an environment of academic inquiry and excellence, brings to campus a variety of renowned scholars, speakers, authors, and poets. The series is supported through grants provided by the Libra Foundation.