Mark Strand, seen in an undated photo, was awarded the...

Mark Strand, seen in an undated photo, was awarded the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1999. Strand, a former U.S. poet laureate, was recognized for "Blizzard of One.'' Credit: AP File

Mark Strand, considered among the most important contemporary American poets, will be reading his work Thursday at Long Island University's C.W. Post Campus.

The reading will take place in connection with the school's "Poetry Awards Night," where three award recipients will also share their work.

Strand, whose innumerable distinctions include a Pulitzer Prize and having been a U.S. Poet Laureate, is also an accomplished editor and translator who teaches at Columbia University.

"He is crème de la crème of Americans writing now," says Joan Digby, director of the poetry center and honors program at C.W. Post. Attendees will get a chance to ask him questions and rub shoulders at a reception after the reading.

This event marks one of several planned across Long Island this month, which is National Poetry Month.

So, why is poetry important to our local cultural landscape?

"Long Island, of course, has a tradition of great poets starting with Whitman. William Cullen Bryant - his house is just down the road from Post," Digby says. "We still represent a great part of New York that has open space and places suitable for reflection."

And that's exactly what Digby hopes attendees will take away from this event: "Thoughtfulness. A sense of their own experience becoming the material for poetry."

WHEN/WHERE 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Great Hall of Winnick House at C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville.


INFO  516-299-2840

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