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Local Author, Susquehanna Professor to Read From New Book of Poetry

Published on September 20, 2011

Gary Fincke, Charles Degenstein professor of creative writing at Susquehanna University,Gary Fincke where he directs The Writers Institute, will read from his newly published collection of poems, “The History of Permanence,” Sept. 29 at 7:30 p.m. in Seibert Hall’s Isaacs Auditorium at Susquehanna.

The book’s publisher, Stephen F. Austin University Press, awarded its annual poetry prize to the volume, saying, “Gary Fincke, through 12 books of poems published over 24 years, has built a reputation for his skill at combining the realism of personal narrative with the realism of the fantastic precisely imagined. The poems in ‘The History of Permanence’ are startling in their inclusiveness, juxtaposing history, science, myth and popular culture with a narrative thread that rises from memory.”

According to the publisher, the book alternates groups of distinctively individual poems with long poem sequences on subjects ranging from the difficulties of genius, to wondrous things that literally fall from the sky, to the title sequence’s meditation on the desire for permanence.

As author Robert Cording says, “Gary Fincke finds the words for that lone, long labor of our lives that shapes who we become and readies us for those moments when the ‘possibility of happiness/surprise[s] us.’ His great gift … is the way he so casually connects his own life to those worlds, his poems always convincing the reader with their intelligence, with their subtle wit and humor, and with their deep feeling as they simultaneously strive for a history of permanence and comically acknowledge our human failures.”

Fincke’s poems have appeared frequently in such well-regarded journals as The Paris Review, Ploughshares, the Virginia Quarterly Review, the Missouri Review, the Kenyon Review, the Georgia Review and the Gettysburg Review. Reprinted in Harper’s, the Pushcart Prize volumes, Poetry Daily and Verse Daily, his work has won the Ohio State University Press/The Journal Poetry Book Prize and the Bess Hokin Prize from Poetry magazine, among other awards.


Karen M. Jones



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