Thursday, March 19, 2015

Poet Kicks Off English Department Spring Reading Series

By Deborah Fleming, Professor of English
Our first reader this year is J. David Cummings, winner of last year's Richard Snyder Poetry Prize from the Ashland Poetry Press. The reading will be held at 4:00 on Monday, March 23 in the Ronk Lecture room in the Dwight Schar College of Education.

Educated at Pennsylvania State University, Cummings worked as a theoretical physicist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for more than ten years.

Deciding in 1973 that he could no longer work in nuclear weapons development, he resigned and never returned to defense work or physics research.

In the early 1990s he traveled to Japan where he visited the Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park.

In response to the controversy over a planned Smithsonian Institution exhibit commemorating the 50th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, he began the nearly two-decade project of writing the poems that culminated in Tancho.