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Matt Ellsworth

Ellsworth-author Matt Ellsworth

Alum adds another major poetry award

Tags: kate tufts discovery award, katherine larson, poetry

Flinn Scholar alumna Katherine Larson ('96) has had a big year.

Last March, Yale University Press published Katherine's first volume of poetry, Radial Symmetry, her reward for winning the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize, the oldest annual literary award in the United States and a distinction not far short of winning the Pulitizer Prize.

Writing on the Paris Review Daily in May, Nicole Rudick summed up the collection well: "The natural world has never felt more physical, more alive with tiny movements and infinite textures." In a review for The Independent, Carrie Etter wrote, "Poem by poem, Radial Symmetry exhibits an extraordinary wakefulness, an immersion in nuance that enriches experience."

Now Katherine has been named winner of the $10,000 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, given each year by the Claremont Graduate University "for a first book by a poet of genuine promise." A CGU news release continues:

"The Kingsley and Kate Tufts Poetry Awards are among the most important prizes in all of the arts, and they lift our spirits year after year," Claremont Graduate University President Deborah Freund said. “My most heartfelt congratulations go out to Timothy and Katherine for their extraordinary books. It will be an honor to host these wonderful and creative talents when they visit our campus this spring."

A ceremony for this year's winners will be held on the campus of Claremont Graduate University at 5 p.m. on April 19. Author Maxine Hong Kingston will give special remarks.

As a Flinn Scholar, Katherine earned bachelor's degrees in creative writing and ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Arizona, then earned a master of fine arts degree in creative writing at the University of Virginia.