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News Release| Jean Burden Poetry Reading; Cal State L.A.

January 18, 2012

Note to reporters and journalists: To arrange an interview with Rhina Espaillat, please contact the CSULA Public Affairs office in advance at (323) 343-3050.

Internationally-renowned contemporary American poet to read from ‘Her Place in These Designs’ at Cal State L.A.

Rhina Espaillat to present annual Jean Burden reading Jan. 30

Los Angeles, CA – Award-winning poet and translator Rhina Espaillat will present this year’s Jean Burden Poetry Reading at California State University, Los Angeles on Monday, January 30, 6:30 p.m., in Cal State L.A.’s Golden Eagle Ballroom.

Picture of Rhina Espaillat.

Espaillat will read from her collections of poems, including Her Place in These Designs (Truman State University Press, 2008). After the reading, she will sign copies of several of her books. Admission to this event is free and open to the public.

Born in the Dominican Republic in 1932, Espaillat moved to the United States in 1939 and for many years taught high school English in New York City. She has published numerous essays, short stories, and poems in both English and Spanish, and she has translated English verse (most notably that of Robert Frost) into Spanish, and Spanish verse (most notably that of St. John of the Cross) into English.

Her recent collections of poems include Where Horizons Go (1998, winner of the T. S. Eliot Prize), Rehearsing Absence (2001, recipient of the Richard Wilbur Award) and Playing At Stillness (2005). She is perhaps the only contemporary American poet to have received awards from both the Poetry Society of America and The Ministry of Culture of the Dominican Republic.

“Rhina Espaillat’s poems are full of shrewd good sense, while tactfully acknowledging those mysteries and puzzles of life that baffle good sense and that only faith can address,” said CSULA’s English Professor Timothy Steele. “She is also a wonderful craftsperson and has produced, among her many marvels, some of the finest sonnets in modern and contemporary verse.”

For more about Espaillat, go to and    

This event is sponsored by the Center for Contemporary Poetry and Poetics, Department of English, and College of Arts and Letters at CSULA.

The University is located at the Eastern Avenue exit, San Bernardino Freeway, at the interchange of the 10 and 710 Freeways. Public (permit dispensers) parking is available on the top level of Parking Structure C. For more on the poetry reading, call the Cal State L.A. English Department at (323) 343-4140.

Jean Burden Annual Poetry Series

This series, one of the longest running and most prestigious in the U.S., was established in 1986 by friends of the late Jean Burden to honor her achievements as a poet, essayist, editor, teacher and scholar. An Illinois native, University of Chicago alumna, and Altadena resident, Burden served as poetry editor of Yankee Magazine for 47 years, and published two collections of poetry, a volume of essays on poetry, and six books on animal welfare. Sustained by a generous bequest from Virginia Smith, the Jean Burden Series has featured such guest readers as Lucille Clifton, Wendy Cope, Victor Hernández Cruz, Rita Dove, Anthony Hecht, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Galway Kinnell, Carolyn Kizer, Maxine Kumin, Andrew Motion, Harryette Mullen, Howard Nemerov, Mary Oliver, Linda Pastan, Adrienne Rich, Mark Strand, and Richard Wilbur.


WHO & WHAT:  Poet and translator Rhina Espaillat presents Cal State L.A.’s 27th Annual Jean Burden Poetry Reading Series. A book signing will follow the reading. (The event is free and open to the public.)

WHEN:  Monday, January 30,  6:30 p.m.

WHERE: Cal State L.A.’s Golden Eagle Ballroom. The University is located at the Eastern Avenue exit, San Bernardino Freeway, at the interchange of the 10 and 710 Freeways. Public (permit dispensers) parking is available on the top level of Parking Structure C. For campus map and directions, go to /univ/maps/cslamap.php.

DETAILS:  For information, contact the CSULA English Department at (323) 343-4140.

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 Working for California since 1947: The 175-acre hilltop campus of California State University, Los Angeles is at the heart of a major metropolitan city, just five miles from Los Angeles’ civic and cultural center. More than 20,000 students and 220,000 alumni—with a wide variety of interests, ages and backgrounds—reflect the city’s dynamic mix of populations. Six Colleges offer nationally recognized science, arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and humanities programs, among others, led by an award-winning faculty. Cal State L.A. is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Jazz Orchestra and to the Honors College for high-achieving students. Programs that provide exciting enrichment opportunities to students and community include an NEH-supported humanities center; a NASA-funded center for space research; and a growing forensic science program, housed in the Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center.