Kalamazoo Valley Community College

Poet Dennis Hinrichsen Visits on Oct. 6

10/06/2011

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It’s no surprise that poetry delights award-winning author Dennis Hinrichsen. The Lansing Community College English instructor has written six books of poems and has received multiple awards. He’ll share his enthusiasm for writing on Oct. 6 as the first author in Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s “About Writing” Visiting Author Series. At 10 a.m., Hinrichsen will host a craft talk geared toward students in the Student Commons Forum at KVCC’s Texas Township Campus. At 2:15 p.m. in the Student Commons Theater, he will hold a poetry reading.

Mary Ann Samyn, creative writing instructor at West Virginia University called Hinrichsen a poet who “understands the cunning of a comma, the devastations of the line.” KVCC English instructor Rob Haight, who coordinates the college’s annual visiting author series, said he’s pleased to kick off the series with Hinrichsen’s appearance. “He has published widely over many years and written one award-winning book of poetry after another, published by some of the best poetry presses in the country. His work is intelligent and immediate, and with each new collection Dennis shows he is reaching further to find fresh language to convey human experience,” Haight said. Hinrichsen's books include, Rip Tooth (2011 University of Tampa Poetry Prize), Kurosawa’s Dog (2008 FIELD Poetry Prize), Cage of Water (Akron University Press), Detail from the Garden of Earthly Delights (1999 Akron Poetry Prize), The Rain That Falls This Far (Galileo Press), and The Attraction of Heavenly Bodies (Wesleyan University Press). He is also winner of an NEA grant, two grants from the State of Michigan, and awards from Poetry Northwest and Carolina Quarterly. He teaches technical writing, creative writing, lyric writing and literature at Lansing Community College and has worked there since 1987.

Hinrichsen writes a lot about family and said his father’s immigrant story has been a rich source of fodder. The veteran poet remains passionate. “I’m intrigued by poems and I enjoy writing them,” he said. “It’s an on-going passion and a never-ending source of delight. Poetry is still interesting after more than 30 years, still fresh and intriguing.” During his morning talk at KVCC, Hinrichsen will touch on what draws him to want to write. He’ll also share some ideas about organizing poems and said there are some interesting song writing concepts that can also be applied to poetry. In the afternoon session, Hinrichsen plans to read from his collection of poems and answer questions from the audience. All “About Writing” events are free and open to the public. Andy Kroll, a reporter for Mother Jones in Washington, DC will be the second writer featured in the series. He is a frequent guest on CNN, MSNBC, and “Countdown” with Keith Olbermann. His work has appeared at The Wall Street Journal, SportsIllustrated.com, The Detroit News, Salon, and TomDispatch.com, where he's an associate editor.

He’ll visit KVCC on Tuesday, Nov. 22 for a 10 a.m. craft talk and a 2:15 p.m. reading, both at the Texas Township Campus. KVCC’s “About Writing” series is orchestrated by instructor Rob Haight and offers students the opportunity to dialogue with professional writers and listen to their work. The series will continue through March. For more information, call Haight at 269-488-4452.