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Noted poet honored posthumously with book reading

May 28, 2010

KALAMAZOO--The life work of the late Herbert S. Scott, an award-winning poet and longtime English professor at Western Michigan University, will be celebrated Thursday, June 10, during a reading from a new selected collection of his poems.

The free, public event is set for 5:30 p.m. in the Meader Rare Book Room of WMU's Waldo Library. A reception will follow the reading from "The Other Life," a 126-poem collection of Scott's works from 1974 to 2005 published by Carnegie Mellon University Press.

"The Other Life" includes broad sections from three highly acclaimed out-of-print books, "Disguises," "Groceries" and "Durations," and from Scott's most recent book, 2004's "Sleeping Woman," another CMU Press publication.

The new collection was edited by David Dodd Lee, a widely published poet who studied with Scott while enrolled in WMU's Creative Writing Program in the early 1990's. Lee helped Scott launch the University's New Issues Poetry and Prose Press, which now boasts more than 100 titles
"From his first year at Western in 1968, Herb touched so many lives for the better, as teacher, mentor, editor and friend," says Dr. Arnie Johnston, a professor in the English department when Scott joined the faculty and chair of the department when Scott retired. "Up until days before his passing, he was hard at work on the latest batch of manuscripts for New Issues Press, which he founded, served as editor, and molded into one of the nation's outstanding literary presses, and which he assured would offer training in editing and publishing to departmental graduate students."

Scott, who died in 2006, was named the Gwen Frostic Professor of Creative Writing at WMU in 1998 and retired in 2004. He received numerous fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs. He earned a bachelor's degree from Fresno State College in 1964 and a master's degree from the University of Iowa in 1966.

For more information about the book reading, contact WMU's Margaret von Steinen at margaret.vonsteinen@wmich.edu or (269) 387-3993.

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Media contact: Margaret von Steinen, (269) 387-3993, margaret.vonsteinen@wmich.edu

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