was the spring Lawrence Clayton Poets and Writers Speaker Series guest. The Lawrence Clayton Poets and Writers
Speaker series is made possible by the McIntyre–West Endowment of the Hardin-Simmons
University Academic Foundation.
and answer session was held in afternoon for students, faculty, staff and
guests. Marks read several poems from his collection of works later that
listening to Marks,” said Zac Christian, junior English and history major from Comanche,
Texas. “It was fascinating to get the chance to hear a poet discuss his
craft. It’s always interesting to get a backstage view of the creative
Marks' first book of
poetry, Renunciation, was
selected by poet Philip Levine as a 1999 National Poetry Series Competition
Winner, and Renunciation was the
winner of the Natalie Ornish Prize from the Texas Institute of Letters. The Radio Tree is his most recent
book of poetry, winning the Green Rose Prize from New Issues Press in 2011.
“There’s something about the act of immersing
yourself in the language of the poem and the imagination of a poem that invites
us in to experience the poem," Marks said. “I think it is that experience that
we have as a reader is also the thing we are looking for as writers. There is
something pleasurable about the experience of writing, of working with language,
of playing with possibilities. Part of the reason we go to poetry is to be
entertained. It’s for pleasure, and if we forget that poetry is something that
gives us pleasure we miss something that is fundamental to it.”
His poems have appeared
in the New England Review, The Paris
Review, Poetry Northwest, Ploughshares, Southwest Review, The Threepenny
Review, TriQuarterly, The Virginia Quarterly Review, as well as in
the anthology Legitimate Dangers
(Sarabande Books, 2006) among others.
Marks grew up in rural Michigan and received a B.A. in English from
Kalamazoo College. His Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing (poetry) is from
Warren Wilson College, and his Ph.D. in Creative Writing and Literature is from
the University of Houston. He is Distinguished Teaching Professor and Director
of Creative Writing at the University of North Texas.