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Robert Lowell Memorial Lecture: Seamus Heaney

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Click here to watch Seamus Heaney on BUniverse.

Nobel Prize–winning poet Seamus Heaney gives Boston University’s semiannual Lowell Lecture, joined by David Ferry, an Arts and Sciences lecturer in creative writing, and Peter Campion (GRS’00) for a reading and book signing.

Campion reads selections from his 2005 collection, Other People.Ferry reads two poems, as well as his own translation of an Anglo-Saxonpoem written before the year 1000. Heaney reads several selections fromhis works, including “Anything Can Happen,” a translation andadaptation of one of Horace’s Odes, inspired by September 11, and partof a sequence he wrote after suffering a stroke in 2006.

“I began to realize that in the great story in the New Testament aboutthe man who was cured of the palsy being lowered through the roof andbeing healed by the Christ — that was great, that was terrific forhim, but in a way, the real beauty is the guys who carried him,” Heaneysays. “It’s the friendship factor, the sustenance, the help, the humanchain aspect of that that I learned, through my experience, should becelebrated.”

About the speakers:
Seamus Heaney,the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1995, is the author ofmore than 40 works of poetry, prose, and translation, including 1999’s Beowulf: A New Verse Translation and 2004’s The Burial at Thebes: a Version of Sophocles’ Antigone. His most recent poetry collection, 2006’s District and Circle, was awarded the T. S. Eliot Prizeby the British Poetry Book Society. He is a member of Aosdána, theIrish academy of artists and writers, and a foreign member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

David Ferry, the Sophie Chantal Hart Professor Emeritus of English at Wellesley College, is an Arts and Sciencescreative writing lecturer. He has written several books of poetry andtranslation, including the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize–winning Of No Country I Know: New and Selected Poems and Translations, The Eclogues of Virgil, The Odes of Horace: A Translation, Dwelling Places: Poems and Translations, and Gilgamesh: A New Rendering in English Verse. Ferry’s awards include the Sixtieth Fellowship of the Academy of American Poets,the Teasdale Prize for Poetry, and a John Simon Guggenheim FoundationFellowship. In 1998 he was elected a fellow of the American Academy ofArts and Sciences.

Peter Campion (GRS’00) is currently an assistant professor of English at Washington College in Maryland. His poetry collection Other People was published in 2005, and his work has appeared in the Boston Globe, Modern Painters, Parnassus, Poetry, Poetry Northwest, Tikkun, and The Yale Review. He was a Wallace Stegner Fellow and Jones Lecturer at Stanford University and held a George Starbuck Lectureship at BU.

The Robert Lowell Memorial Lecture Serieswas established in 2005 to bring distinguished writers to campus toread their works alongside a member of the Creative Writing Programfaculty and a recent program graduate. The series is funded by NancyLivingston (COM’69) and her husband, Fred Levin, through the ShensonFoundation, in memory of Ben and A. Jess Shenson.


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