Garrett To Receive Aiken Taylor Award For Modern American Poetry
Dec. 7, 1999 -- The poet, novelist and essayist
George Garrett, professor of English
at the University of Virginia, has been chosen to receive the 13th
Aiken Taylor Award for Modern American Poetry. The $10,000 prize,
awarded annually to honor the work of a long and distinguished career,
is administered by the Sewanee Review, the nation's oldest literary
quarterly, which has been continuously published since its founding
in 1892. The prize will be presented at the University of the South
in late January.
award, among the country's most prestigious for poetry, was
established in 1986 through a bequest to the University of the South
in Sewanee, Tenn., by Dr. K.P.A. Taylor, a younger brother of the
poet Conrad Aiken. Previous winners of the prize have included Richard
Wilbur, Howard Nemerov, Gwendolyn Brooks, Maxine Kumin and Wendell
who is retiring this month as the Henry Hoyns Professor in the U.Va.
English Department's Creative Writing Program, succeeded Peter
Taylor in that chair. Garrett is the author of seven books of poetry
including most recently, "Days of Our Lives Lie in Fragments:
New and Old Poems 1957-1997," published by the Louisiana State
University Press last year.
Core, editor of the Sewanee Review since 1973, said: "It is
very gratifying that the Aiken Taylor Prize for the year 2000 will
go to George Garrett, who has long been associated with the Sewanee
Review and who lectured on the poetry of Anthony Hecht and Fred
Chappell when those writers won the prize."
poet and critic Neal Bowers, writing in the Sewanee Review (Spring
1999), observes of him that "in an age of narrow specialization
he is one of those rare writers who lives at ease in several genres."
the beginning, Garrett's work reveals a poet of rare intelligence
and quick insight," Bowers adds. "Garrett's poems
lodge in the heart as well as the mind."
novels, collections of stories and poetry, drama, criticism, essays
and other nonfiction, Garrett is the author of some 30 books and
is editor or co-editor of 19 others. His numerous honors include
the PEN/Malamud Award for Short Fiction and the T.S. Eliot Award
for Creative Writing. The Eliot Award's recipients include
Walker Percy, Octavio Paz, V.S. Naipaul, Eugene Ionesco, Anthony
Powell and Jorge Luis Borges.
affiliation with the Sewanee Review began in 1957, and in 1958-59
he held a Sewanee Review fellowship. Aside from Robert Penn Warren
he is the only writer to have regularly published poetry, fiction
and criticism in the quarterly. "Like Warren," Core said,
"Garrett is one of a vanishing breed -- the man of letters.
And no other writer has done as much as he to promote, enhance,
and elevate writing in the U.S. over the past 40 years."
taught writing at U.Va. from 1962 to 1967 and returned to take the
Hoyns professorship in 1984. He also has taught at Wesleyan University,
Hollins College, the University of Michigan and Princeton University.
Among his many well regarded books is the trilogy of novels set
in Elizabethan England, "Death of the Fox," "The
Succession," and "Entered From the Sun," and the
novels "Which Ones Are the Enemy?" and "Do, Lord,
additional information George Core, editor of the Sewanee Review,
may be reached at (931) 598-1245.
Bob Brickhouse, (804) 924-6856