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Key Researcher

Alison Deming

Professor in Creative Writing

Poet and essayist Alison Hawthorne Deming is the author of seven books, including Science and Other Poems (LSU Press, 1994), Genius Loci (Penguin, 2005), and Writing the Sacred into the Real (Milkweed, 2001). Her newest book, a collection of poems entitled Rope, follows the paths of imagination into meditations on salt, love, Hurricane Katrina, Greek myth, and the search for extraterrestrial life. Rope will be published by Penguin this fall. Deming has received many awards for her writing, including a Walt Whitman Award from the Academy of American Poets, a Pushcart Prize, two NEA fellowships, a Fine Arts Work Center fellowship, and a Wallace Stegner fellowship. She teaches creative writing at The University of Arizona.

Deming received an MFA from Vermont College, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University, two poetry fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, and fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the Arizona Commission on the Arts, the Tucson/Pima Arts Council, and a National Writer’s Voice Residency Award. Her work has been awarded the Pablo Neruda Prize from Nimrod, a Pushcart Prize, the Gertrude B. Claytor Award from the Poetry Society of America, the Best Essay Gold Award from the GAMMA Southeastern Magazine Association, and the Bayer Award in Science Writing from Creative Nonfiction for the essay “Poetry and Science: A View From the Divide.” She has held residencies at Yaddo, Cummington Community of the Arts, Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Mesa Refuge, The Island Institute in Alaska, Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers in Scotland, and the H. J. Andrews Experimental Forest in Oregon. She has served on the faculty of the Prague Summer Program, Taos Summer Writer’s Conference, University of Montana’s Environmental Writing Institute, Indiana University Writers’ Conference, Wildbranch Writing Workshop, and the Bread Loaf/Orion Environmental Writing Workshop, among many others.

Working with the Language of Conservation Project sponsored by Poets House, Deming curated the poetry installation at the Jacksonville (FL) Zoo and Gardens. Her writing has been widely published and anthologized, including in Ecotone, The Georgia Review, Orion, OnEarth, Isotope, Southwestern American Literature, Parthenon West, Western Humanities Review, Sierra, Gnosis, Cutthroat, American Poetry Review, Eleven Eleven, Terrain.org, Verse and Universe: Poems on Science and Mathematics, The Norton Book of Nature Writing, and Best American Science and Nature Writing. Former Director of the University of Arizona Poetry Center (1990-2002), she currently is Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Arizona, where she is also affiliated with the Institute of the Environment, and a member of the Board of Directors of Orion magazine and Terrain Publishing. She lives in Tucson, Arizona and Grand Manan, New Brunswick, Canada.