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Poet Tony Barnstone opens Visiting Writers Series

September 07, 2011

Multi-award-winning poet Tony Barnstone will discuss his work and read at two different events this month at Arizona State University’s Tempe campus.

Barnstone will open the 2011-2012 Distinguished Visiting Writers Series at the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing with a Public Craft Q & A at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28, in Piper Writers House.

Then, at 7:45 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 29, he will read from his work and sign books in Pima Auditorium (230) in the Memorial Union. Appearing with him on Sept. 29 will be musician John Clinebell.

A professor of English at Whittier College, Barnstone lived for many years in Greece, Spain, Kenya and China before earning graduate degrees at the University of California, Berkeley.

His poetry, translations, essays on poetics, and fiction have appeared in dozens of American literary journals, from APR to Agni. He has won fellowships and prizes from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council, as well as the Pushcart Prize, the Paumanok Poetry Award, the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize, The Sow's Ear Poetry Contest, the Milton Dorfman Poetry Prize, the National Poetry Competition (Chester H. Jones Foundation), the Pablo Neruda Prize in Poetry, the Cecil Hemley Award, and the Poetry Society of America.

In 2006, Barnstone won the Benjamin Saltman Award in Poetry for his manuscript “The Golem of Los Angeles,” which was published by Red Hen Press in 2007. He won the John Ciardi Prize in Poetry in 2008 for “Tongue of War: From Pearl Harbor to Nagasaki” and won the grand prize in the Strokestown International Poetry Festival, in Strokestown, Ireland, in 2008.

Clinebell, who describes himself as “a laid-back West-of-the-405 guy from the Midwest who sings with a smile from his heart,” plays his guitar in coffeehouses and on Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade, and volunteers at The Art of Elysium, an arts program for ill children.

Barnstone is collaborating with Clinebell to turn his book of poems, “Tongue of War: From Pearl Harbor to Nagasaki,” into a concept album.

For more information on the two events, contact Tom McDermott, (480) 727-0818, or go to

To hear Barnstone read one of his poems, go to