Mike Emery
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Poet, UH Creative Writing Prof Tony Hoagland Receives Jackson Poetry PrizeAward honors american poets of exceptional talent, carries purse of $50,000

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April 7, 2008-Houston-
Award-winning poet and University of Houston creative writing professor Tony Hoagland has another award to add to his collection of honors. Hoagland was named the second annual recipient of the Jackson Poetry Prize.

Presented by Poets & Writers Inc., the nation's largest nonprofit literary organization serving creative writers, this honor is awarded to an American poet of exceptional talent who has published at least one book of recognized literary merit but has not yet received major national acclaim. The Jackson Poetry Prize carries a purse $50,000.

"It's great that the Jackson Prize supports the making of American poetry, and I'm honored to be recognized by it," Hoagland said. "When American poets do their job, they deliver something that is distinct from dumbed down political messages, anesthetizing consumerism, reality television shows, pious self-righteous finger-pointing Puritanism, vapid cell phone conversations and the general culture of consensual amnesia. Good poems are vivid, ambiguous, complex, forceful and radically engaged with the world and the humane heart."

Hoagland is the author of 2003's "What Narcissism Means to Me,", 1998's "Donkey Gospel," which was selected as the 1997 James Laughlin Award of The Academy of American Poets, and "Sweet Ruin," which received the Brittingham Prize in Poetry.

Among the author's other honors is the 2005 O.B. Hardison Jr. Poetry Prize, which honors literary professionals for both teaching abilities and writing talents.

"Like his fellow faculty members in the Creative Writing Program, Tony is that rare combination of good writer, good teacher and good citizen," said J. Kastely, director of the UH Creative Writing Program. "He and his fellow creative writing faculty members make our program into a community of writers. That community becomes a strong reason for writers and graduate students to come to Houston."

Poets were nominated for the Jackson Poetry Prize by a panel of their peers, who will remain anonymous. The award was made possible by a significant donation from the Liana Foundation and named for the John and Susan Jackson family.

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Categories: Arts