University of Pittsburgh
March 4, 2002

Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series Hosts Poet Alice Notley March 21

Contact:  412-624-4147

March 4, 2002

PITTSBURGH—Poet Alice Notley will give a free reading as part of the University of Pittsburgh Writing Program's Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series (PCWS) at 8:15 p.m. March 21 in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, Schenley Drive, in Oakland.

Notley is known internationally for her experiments with poetic and free verse forms. Between 1976 and 1992 she became a significant figure in New York's Lower East Side poetry community and is often identified as a prominent member of the diverse second generation of the New York School of Poetry.

Notley grew up in Needles, Cal., and received the Bachelor of Arts degree from Barnard College in 1967 and the Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Iowa in 1969. She now lives in Paris, where she edits the journal Gare du Nord with her husband, British poet Douglas Oliver.

Notley has written more than 20 books of poetry, including "How Spring Comes" (1981), for which she won a 1982 San Francisco Poetry Center Book Award, and "Mysteries of Small Houses" (1998), which chronologically reconstructs her past from young woman to acclaimed artist. She also is the author of "The Descent of Alette" (1996), an epic poem with themes similar to Dante's "Inferno"; the book follows the narrator, Alette, underground, where people forbidden to live in the world above ride endlessly on subways, and Alette journeys to confront the Tyrant and heal the world.

In addition to writing poetry, Notley has created collages, watercolors, and sketches. Many of her collages are composed of everyday objects.

The last author of the spring 2002 PCWS season, Wanda Coleman, is scheduled to give a free reading April 4.

PCWS is cosponsored by the Wyndham Garden Hotel-University Place and Pitt's East Asian Studies, The Book Center, Environmental Studies, Environmental Committee of the Student Government Board, and Western Pennsylvania Writing Project.