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U of I Professor and Former Student to Present New Poetry Works March 6

February 21, 2024

MOSCOW, Idaho — University of Idaho Professor Emeritus Ron McFarland will join Spokane native and MFA graduate of the U of I creative writing program Georgia Tiffany at a free public reading at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at the Lewis-Clark State College Center for Arts & History, 415 Main St. in downtown Lewiston.

McFarland, who served as Idaho’s first state writer-in-residence, will read from his fifth full-length book of poems, “A Variable Sense of Things,” released in December. The book’s 60 poems cover a wide range of topics — from a Boy Scout growing up in Florida, to a customer service rep at a credit union, to a high school dropout pulling green chain at the local mill, to a piece in which he adopts Ernest Hemingway’s voice.

Former colleague and U of I Professor Emerita Mary Blew describes them as “intensely personal poems, studded with unexpected ironies like grace notes, which illuminate the depth below the surface.”

Tiffany will be celebrating her first full-length book, “Body Be Sound,” published in November. Educated as a concert pianist, first at U of I and later at Indiana University, she taught for 16 years at Mead High School in Spokane. She instituted the school’s humanities and philosophy programs, and her creative writing students won numerous awards at state and national levels. She teaches piano in Moscow.

Her 60 poems speak to her love of Brahms and Chopin, to tundra swans and the scablands, to Fermat’s mathematical theorem and the Venus of Hohle Fels. In these poems, the reader encounters a sunset outside Tekoa, Van Gogh at Arles and a bear on Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Tiffany’s poetry “reads like a book of spells and incantations, a collection of deliciously musical poems rendered as sound and sense,” U of I Professor Emeritus Robert Wrigley said.

The two poets have taught creative writing classes and given readings together across the country. In addition to the public reading, they will also visit classes at Lewis-Clark State College.

Media Contact:

Jennifer S. Anderson
Associate Professor, Publishing Arts & Creative Writing
Lewis-Clark State College

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