University of Nebraska celebrates National Poetry Month

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By Andrea Barbe

April is National Poetry Month and the University of Nebraska is recognizing it with poetry readings on April 19.University of Nebraska – Lincoln English professor and published poet Greg Kuzma will present his poems at The Kaneko-UNO Library at 1111 Jones St., near the Bemis Art Building in the Old Market.

Kuzma began teaching poetry writing at UNL in 1968 after receiving his bachelors and masters degree from Syracuse University in New York. In the early 1970s, several of his literary works were printed. More than 300 of his poems were published in works like The New Yorker, The Hudson Review, The Paris Review and Poetry Northwest among many other prestigious magazines of the time.

Kuzma has also penned more than 30 books and chapbooks with volumes of his poetry. One of those books, “Good News,” which was originally published by Viking, was later reprinted and distributed by Carnegie Mellon University Press for their Modern Classics series. His other more recent poetry works are featured in “Triquarterly” and “Witness.”

In addition to writing and being published, Kuzma also started a modest literary press called Best Cellar Press. The press produced chapbooks that included works from poets like Ted Kooser, Albert Goldbarth, Wendell Berry and Richard Shelton – some of America’s best-known poets.

While at UNL, Kuzma is dedicated to nurturing writers and young poets. He has sponsored the UNL student literary magazine, Laurus, for the past 10 years and has been writing screenplays for the past 15.

The poetry readings will begin at 2 p.m. at the Kaneko-UNO Library, which opened earlier this year as a collaboration between UNO’s Criss Library and artist Jun Kaneko.

For more information about this event, call 932-3486.

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