CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., April 6, 2011 — Missouri poetry icon William Trowbridge will read from his work from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 13, in the University Center Program Lounge at Southeast Missouri State University.
His visit is sponsored by Southeast’s University Press, and the reading is free and open to the public.
The creator of the darkly funny King Kong poems returns to Southeast with a new book, “Ship of Fool,” and a new character, Fool, who represents the eternal, naïve, persistent Loser–-the fool archetype with a cynical kick. Fool (and his British cousin, Foole) represents our rationales and good intentions gone awry in a world waiting to illuminate our next mistake.
Critic David Atkinson writes about “Ship of Fool”: “Though tragic in a laughable way, Fool is everything that is good and hopeless about us, Bill Trowbridge included. We are good at heart, but we are screw-ups. No matter how hard we try, we will never catch an even break. At the same time, though, Trowbridge shows us why this makes our lives so very beautiful.”
Trowbridge’s poetry publications include five full collections: “Ship of Fool” (Red Hen Press, 2011), “The Complete Book of Kong” (Southeast Missouri State University Press, 2003), “Flickers,” “O Paradise,” and “Enter Dark Stranger” (University of Arkansas Press, 2000, 1995, 1989), and three chapbooks, “The Packing House Cantata” (Camber Press, 2006), “The Four Seasons” (Red Dragonfly Press, 2001) and “The Book of Kong” (Iowa State University Press, l986). His poems have appeared in more than 30 anthologies and textbooks, as well as in such periodicals as “Poetry,” “The Gettysburg Review,” “Crazyhorse,” “The Georgia Review,” “Boulevard,” “The Southern Review,” “Columbia,” “Colorado Review,” “The Iowa Review,” “Prairie Schooner,” “Epoch,” and “New Letters.” His awards include an Academy of American Poets Prize, a Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference scholarship, a Camber Press Poetry Chapbook Award, and fellowships from The MacDowell Colony, Ragdale, Yaddo, and The Anderson Center. He is Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at Northwest Missouri State University and a mentor in the University of Nebraska Low-residency MFA Program.