Rolling Reading Series to feature alumna, award-winning poet Ruth Ellen Kocher

October 25, 2016

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Award-winning poet Ruth Ellen Kocher, a Penn State alumna who earned a bachelor of arts in English in 1990, will read as part of the Mary E. Rolling Reading Series at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, in Paterno Library’s Foster Auditorium. The reading is free and open to the public.

Kocher is the author of seven books of poetry, including “Desdemona’s Fire,” winner of the Naomi Long Madget Award for African American Poets; “When the Moon Knows You’re Wandering,” winner of the Green Rose Prize in Poetry; and, “domina Un/blued,” winner of the 2014 PEN/Open Book Award. Her work has also been published in Callaloo, Cimarron Review, Ploughshares, African American Review, The Gettysburg Review, The Missouri Review, Washington Square, Crab Orchard Review, and Ninth Letter.  Her poems have also been translated into Persian in the Iranian literary magazine She’r.

About Kocher’s most recent collection, “Third Voice,” Publisher’s Weekly writes, “The dramatic voices that operate throughout act as a reminder that history is a fragmented reality with many angles, not simply a linear series of indisputable facts.” Poet Al Young also praises Kocher, saying, “This versatile poet blinks at nothing under the stars. Speaking and singing in the many voices and key signatures of poetry, our primal human language, Kocher shines and sheds visible and audible light.”

Kocher currently lives in Erie, Colorado, and teaches in the Poetry, Poetics, and Literature Program at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

The Mary E. Rolling Reading Series is a program within Penn State’s Creative Writing Program in English. It receives generous support from Penn State’s College of the Liberal Arts, the Department of English, the Joseph L. Grucci Poetry Endowment, the Mary E. Rolling Lectureship in Creative Writing, and University Libraries.

A full listing of upcoming readings can be found at

  • Ruth Ellen Kocher

    Penn State alumna and award-winning poet Ruth Ellen Kocher will conduct a poetry reading on Thursday, Nov. 3 as part of the Mary E. Rolling Reading Series.

    IMAGE: photo provided

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated January 13, 2017