Morton Marcus Poetry Reading: Natasha Trethewey

Hosted by The Humanities Institute at UC Santa Cruz
2007 Poetry winner Natasha Trethewey. (Jill Norton)

Please join us for the 13th annual Morton Marcus Poetry Reading, featuring honored guest Natasha Trethewey. Poet Gary Young will host the program, and the evening will include an announcement of the winner of the Morton Marcus Poetry Contest (recipient receives a $1,000 prize).

2007 Poetry winner Natasha Trethewey served two terms as the 19th Poet Laureate of the United States (2012-2014). She is the author of five collections of poetry, "Monument" (2018), which was longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award; "Thrall" (2012); "Native Guard" (2006), for which she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, "Bellocq’s Ophelia" (2002); and "Domestic Work" (2000), which was selected by 1987 Poetry winner Rita Dove as the winner of the inaugural Cave Canem Poetry Prize for the best first book by an African American poet and won both the 2001 Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Book Prize and the 2001 Lillian Smith Award for Poetry. She is also the author of the memoir "Memorial Drive" (2020). Her book of nonfiction, "Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast," appeared in 2010. She is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Beinecke Library at Yale, and the Bunting Fellowship Program of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard. At Northwestern University she is a Board of Trustees Professor of English in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. In 2012 she was named Poet Laureate of the State of Mississippi and and in 2013 she was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The Morton Marcus Poetry Reading honors poet, teacher, and film critic Morton Marcus (1936–2009). Marcus was the 1999 Santa Cruz County Artist of the Year and a recipient of the 2007 Gail Rich Award. He taught English and film at Cabrillo College for thirty years, was the co-host of the radio program, "The Poetry Show," and was the co-host of the television film review show, "Cinema Scene."

The Morton Marcus Poetry Archive can be found at UCSC Special Collections. Mort’s personal papers, manuscripts, and recordings reflect his legacy as a poet and educator, and his collection of poetry books, broadsides, literary magazines and correspondence with other poets and writers illuminate his deep involvement in, and passion for, the literary art of poetry.

This event is a part of Conversations: Power Forged, the Fall UCSC Living Writers course, which features poets, novelists, academics, curators, and artists in conversation with one another, in person, across genre and media to open up a space between them, and all of us, within dialogue, collaboration, politics, intimacy and difference which poet and activist Audre Lorde describes as that raw and powerful connection from which our personal power is forged. Between legacies, institutions, families, embodiments and homes; across race, gender, sexuality, and class, guests will explore just how.

-- from the event page


The reading will be held from 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm PDT at UC Santa Cruz's Merrill College Cultural Center. Attendees must register here. Seating will be first come, first served.