Gizzi’s ‘Archeophonics’ Nominated for National Book Award in Poetry

Peter Gizzi
Peter Gizzi

“Archeophonics,” a new book of poems by English professor Peter Gizzi, has been nominated for a National Book Award.

Gizzi’s is one of 10 books nominated for the poetry award, for which five finalists will be named on Oct. 13. Winners will be announced on Nov. 16.

Gizzi will read at the Amherst Poetry Festival on Sunday, Sept. 18 as part of a program titled “These Worlds in Us: James Tate and Amherst.” The program begins at 8:30 p.m. on the grounds of the Emily Dickinson homestead on Main St. in Amherst.

Gizzi, who joined the faculty in 2001 and teaches in the MFA Program for Poets and Writers, is the author nine volumes of poetry, including “In Defense of Nothing: Selected Poems 1987-2011” (2014); “Threshold Songs” (2011); “The Outernationale” (2007), “Some Values of Landscape and Weather” (2003); “Artificial Heart” (1998); and “Periplum” (1992), as well as many chapbooks and limited editions.

His honors include the Lavan Younger Poet Award from the Academy of American Poets (1994) and fellowships in poetry from the Fund for Poetry (1993), Rex Foundation (1993), Howard Foundation (1998), Foundation for Contemporary Arts (1999) and John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation (2005). In 2011 he was the Judith E. Wilson Visiting Fellow in Poetry at Cambridge University.

Gizzi has held residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, Foundation of French Literature at Royaumont, Un Bureau Sur L’Atlantique, the Centre International de Poesie Marseilleand Tamaas. He has also taught at Brown University, the University of California, Santa Cruz, the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics Summer Program at Naropa, the University of New Orleans Summer Program in Madrid (2004), Summer Literary Seminars in St. Petersburg, the Writer’s Workshop at the University of Iowa and Cambridge University.

In an interview last year, shortly after the release of “In Defense of Nothing: Selected Poems 1987–2011,” Gizzi told the Paris Review, “ . . . I live one poem at a time and one book at a time.”

 “To be honest, I’ve never had an easy relationship with being a writer, though I persist,” he said. “I loved poetry from early adolescence, but it wasn’t something I thought was in me to actually do.”