Yiyun Li, a fast-rising Chinese American writer and alumna of the Writers’ Workshop, takes a break from a reunion at her alma mater in Iowa City and reads outside. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
‘I’ve never been one who said poets should reach 10 million people. I want to make my poems accessible. I really do. But I’m not going to reach 10 million people. That doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with the country. People’s lives don’t include poetry. Maybe that makes it more special.’
– James Tate, poet and winner of the 1992 Pulitzer Prize Ann Hermes/Staff
‘I would not be myself without Iowa. It legitimized the act of writing. It put me in a community of writers.’
– Sena Jeter Naslund, author of seven books, including the bestseller ‘Ahab’s Wife’ Ann Hermes/Staff
Alumni, students, and authors listen to featured panelists during the 75th anniversary reunion of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
Marilyn Chin, author and alumni of the Iowa Writers Workshop, gestures as she reads a story during the Iowa Writers' Workshop 75th Anniversary Reunion at the University of Iowa in Iowa City on Saturday, June 11. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
‘I write slowly. I prick a finger and write in blood.'
– John Casey, writer and translator whose 1989 novel, ‘Spartina,’ won the National Book Award Ann Hermes/Staff
Antoine Wilson, alumni of the Writers' Workshop, listens to the featured panelists during the reunion. The Writers' Workshop is the oldest graduate creative writing program in the country, and, since its founding in 1936, the program has been home to thousands of remarkable writers of fiction and poetry. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
Other alumni of the nation’s oldest graduate creative writing program gather for a reception at a local museum. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
ZZ Packer (l), a rising young writer and winner of a coveted MacArthur Foundation award, talks to Philip Levine, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, in a reading room at the workshop’s home at the University of Iowa. Tony Avelar/The Christian Science Monitor
At Kfar Aza, a kibbutz that overlooks the northern Gaza Strip, the tinny sound of wind chimes mixed with the rumble of jets and the staccato pounding of artillery this afternoon. Though residents say they fear Hamas's rockets, their biggest concern was the recent revelation of tunnels extending into Israel.