Wednesday, August 31, 2005

2005 PEN USA Poetry Awards

Martha Ronk is the winner of the 2005 PEN USA Award in Poetry for her book In a Landscape of Having to Repeat(Omnidawn)

The Judges say: “Martha Ronk’s In a Landscape of Having to Repeat is a collection of poetic meditations on repetition. In these lean, clean blank verse and prose poems, Ronk plays with how creatures of habit (dutiful as we are to necessary repetition (say, bodily functions, memory) and selective repetition (say, watching TV), attempt to repeat once-and-only-once experiences that cannot without difficulty be repeated. The poems are narrative and semi-narrative views of landscape, moving toward, away from and through Ronk’s linguistic flora, Freud’s dream theories, Eva Hesse’s intentionally deteriorating props and sculptures; delightful.

Once and again, In a Landscape of Having to Repeat is an addictively liberating poetic exploration of repetition in familiar and new language we are honored to select Martha Ronk for writing. Word for word, right down to the title askew and the two poems of the same title, Martha Ronk’s In a Landscape of Having to Repeat is a delightful addition to our contemporary literary canon.”

Rae Armantrout Up to Speed: Poems (Wesleyan University Press)
Norman Dubie Ordinary Mornings of a Coliseum (Copper Canyon Press)
Claudia Keelan The Devotion Field (Alice James Books)
D.A. Powell Cocktails (Graywolf Press)

Merilene Murphy (chair), Timothy Liu, Susan McCabe

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