Poet Joshua McKinney will read his work at 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, as part of the Poetry Night Reading Series. Poetry lovers will gather at the John Natsoulas Gallery, 521 First St. in downtown Davis.
McKinney is the author of three books of poetry: “Saunter,” co-winner of the University of Georgia Press Poetry Series Open Competition in 2002; “The Novice Mourner,” winner of the Dorothy Brunsman Poetry Prize in 2005; and “Mad Cursive,” just published in 2012.
McKinney’s poems have appeared in more than 100 national journals, such as American Letters & Commentary, Boulevard and Colorado Review. His other awards include The Dickinson Poetry Prize and a Gertrude Stein Award for Innovative American Writing. After earning a bachelor’s degree in English, a master’s degree in the teaching of writing and a single-subject teaching credential from Humboldt State University, McKinney was accepted as a teaching fellow in the doctoral program at the University of Denver in 1992.
He now teaches poetry, flash fiction and ecopoetics as a professor of English at Sacramento State University. An avid practitioner of Japanese sword arts, McKinney holds the rank of sandan in kendo and sandan in Mugairyu Iaihyodo.
Of McKinney’s most recent book, Donald Revell has said, “Joshua McKinney articulates the mortal grandeur and (this is more poignant than I can rightly say) the tragedy of balance. McKinney simply will not relinquish either past or present, love or bereavement, intellect or animal anguish, merely to accommodate the shrill urgings of our moment. ‘Mad Cursive’ is therefore, and shall remain, a heroic collection.”