Poet and Translator David Perry Does Reading in Rehm
Published: Friday, October 4, 2013
Updated: Sunday, October 6, 2013 17:10
On Thursday, Sept. 26, the College of the Holy Cross’ Working Writers Series hosted its second speaker of the semester.
In Rehm library, members of the Holy Cross community and general Worcester public gathered to listen to American poet and translator Professor David Ferry.
Ferry read several of his poems, in addition to a selection of his translations.
Ferry received his undergraduate degree from Amherst College, continuing on to pursue his graduate degree at Harvard University. Ferry did not start his translating career until after Harvard, beginning with a Babylonian text, Gilgamesh.
Since then, Ferry has translated a collection of various texts, including works by Horace and Virgil.
Ferry is equally renowned for his work as a poet; authoring books of poetry including Dwelling Places (1993) and Of No Country I Know: New and Selected Poems and Translations (1999), which won the Lenore Marshall Prize, the Bingham Poetry Prize, the Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry from the Library of Congress, and was a finalist for the L.L. Winship/PEN New England Award and the New Yorker Book Award.
Ferry’s latest work, Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations (2012), won the National Book Award for Poetry.
Ferry’s other awards and accomplishments include the Harold Morton Landon Translation Award, the Teasdale Prize for Poetry, the Ingram Merrill Award, the William Arrowsmith Translation Prize from AGNI magazine and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the Academy of American Poets. Ferry was elected a fellow to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1998. Currently, he is the Sophie Chantal Hart Professor Emeritus of English at Wellesley College, and a visiting lecturer in creative writing at Boston University.
To start off the night, Ferry read one of his translations from Virgil. He continued, reading a variety of his own poems and some more translations from Virgil. Amongst his poetic works read was Lakewater, which can be seen around the walls and menus of Matt Murphy’s Pub in Brookline, MA. To conclude the event he read two more of his poems, Resemblance and The Birds. Throughout his readings, he held the attention of the audience, maintaining engagement with his enthusiasm clearly communicated through his voice.
The Holy Cross and Worcester community thoroughly enjoyed and benefited from the evening of poetry, both written and read by Ferry, an established and accomplished author.