Former Maine Poet Laureate gives free reading at Fairfield University


Image: Baron WormserAward-winning author Baron Wormser, poet laureate of Maine from 2000 to 2005, will read from his first novel, "Teach Us That Peace" (2013), on Wednesday, March 12 at 7 p.m. at Fairfield University Bookstore, 14 Post Road, Fairfield. Part of The Inspired Writer, the distinguished lecture series of the University's MFA in Creative Writing, this event is free and open to the public.

Wormser, who is a faculty member in the MFA program at Fairfield, is the author of several books of poetry, as well as a memoir and a collection of short stories. "Teach Us That Peace" chronicles the dramatic American moment in the 1960s when a vision of racial harmony began to be more than just a dream. The book follows Susan and Arthur Mermelstein - a mother and son, high school teacher and high school student – working through the complexities of race, politics and history in a beautifully drawn Baltimore, Wormer's childhood home.

Kirkus Reviews commented: "Wormser, a poet, has a miraculous ability to evoke a sense of time and place, and he adeptly conjures a Baltimore 'emphatically below the Mason-Dixon line' with gorgeous prose and thorough scholarship."

"Baron Wormser brings a poet's eye and ear to this highly powerfully and beautifully nuanced novel about racial tensions in the Sixties," said Michael White, Ph.D., director of the MFA program. "His prose transcends all of the clichés and gets to the white-hot center of what it means to be human."

Wormser is a realist who finds his poetic voice in the day to day, in popular culture, and in the emotional particulars that make us human. His poems have appeared in Paris Review, Prairie Schooner, Sewanee Review, and other prestigious literary publications, as well as on National Public Radio's "All Things Considered"and "Writer's Almanac." He is the director of educational outreach for the Frost Place in Franconia, N.H.

For more information on Wormser, visit his website, www.baronwormser.com. For more information on Fairfield's low-residency MFA in Creative Writing and its related programming, visit. www.fairfield.edu/mfa.

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Media Contact: Meredith Guinness, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950, mguinness@fairfield.edu

Posted on February 21, 2014

Vol. 46, No. 183