April 27, 2009 West Coast Poet Ellen Bass To Read April 28 at Library of Congress

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639 | Patricia Gray (202) 707-5394

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins once said the poetry of Ellen Bass “avoids mere confession by the graces of wit, an observant eye, an empathetic heart and just the right image deployed at just the right time.”

Bass will read her poetry at the Library of Congress at 6:45 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28, in the Montpelier Room on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. The program is free and open to the public; no tickets or reservations are needed.

Bass, a Santa Cruz, Calif., poet and non-fiction writer, is the author of four books of poems. Her most recent is “The Human Line,” published in 2007 by Copper Canyon Press. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including The Atlantic Monthly and The American Poetry Review.

Bass also has written extensively in the field of empowerment. Her nonfiction books include “The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse” (Harper Collins 1988), which has sold more than a million copies and has been translated into 10 languages.

Bass teaches in the low residency MFA program, which offers a flexible format for working adults, at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore., and has taught poetry and creative writing nationally and internationally since 1974.

The reading is part of the Library’s spring 2009 literary season, which includes the popular Poetry at Noon series and the traditional evening readings, and other cultural events sponsored by the Library’s Poetry and Literature Center. Poet Laureate Kay Ryan will give her final reading of the season at 6:45 p.m. on Thursday, May 7, in the Coolidge Auditorium on the ground level of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C. The reading is free and open to the public; no tickets or reservations are needed. For more information on the Library’s poetry program and for a video message from Kay Ryan, visit www.loc.gov/poetry/.


PR 09-087
ISSN 0731-3527