Tuesday, December 29, 2009

What is John Koethe reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: John Koethe, author of Ninety-fifth Street and other works of poetry.

One book fr0m his entry:
The Long Embrace: Raymond Chandler and the Woman He Loved by Judith Freeman. This book is the record of a compelling obsession, as Judith Freeman chronicles her visits to all the places Chandler and his beloved wife Cissy lived in Los Angeles and other places in Southern California. Phillip Marlow is the nominal hero of Chandler’s novels, but their real protagonist is the atmospheric urban landscape through which he moves, and this biography in the form of a kind of travelog presents a vivid portrait of one of my favorite writers.[read on]
John Koethe received an A.B. from Princeton in 1967 and a Ph.D. in philosophy from Harvard in 1973. Since then, he has taught in the philosophy department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, from which he will retire as Distinguished Professor in January 2010.

His writings include eight books of poetry: Blue Vents, Domes, The Late Wisconsin Spring, Falling Water, The Constructor, North Point North: New and Selected Poems, Sally's Hair, and Ninety-fifth Street; two books on philosophy: The Continuity of Wittgenstein's Thought and Scepticism, Knowledge and Forms of Reasoning; and a book of literary essays: Poetry at One Remove.

Koethe has received the Frank O'Hara Award, the Kingsley Tufts Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim foundation and the national Endowment for the Arts, and was the first Poet Laureate of Milwaukee. He was the 2008 Elliston Poet in Residence at the University of Cincinnati and will be the Bain-Swiggett Professor of Poetry at Princeton in the spring semester of 2010.

Among the praise for Ninety-fifth Street:
[Koethe's] eighth book of poems [is] full of beauty and feeling. Most of the poems revisit memories -- of a boyhood in California, of becoming a man at Princeton and Harvard, early friendships with the New York School poets, and much more. I think of Koethe as a descendant of Wordsworth, mixing autobiography and memory, in his darkly ruminative, highly readable poems.
--Henri Cole
Writers Read: John Koethe.

--Marshal Zeringue