Connecticut Poet Laureate gives reading and discussion

Connecticut Poet Laureate Rennie McQuilkin

Connecticut Poet Laureate Rennie McQuilkin

Westport Writers’ Workshop presents the first Fairfield County appearance by incoming Connecticut Poet Laureate Rennie McQuilkin on Sunday, Nov. 15, at 3 p.m.,  at the Westport Historical Society, 25 Avery Place, Westport. The reading and discussion will be free and open to the public with light refreshments and McQuilkin’s books available for sale and signing.

“We are extremely fortunate to host a poet of Rennie McQuilkin’s caliber in such a lovely venue as the Westport Historical Society,” says Valerie Ann Leff, executive director of Westport Writers’ Workshop. “McQuilkin is an established and accomplished poet, yet he wants poetry to be part of everyday conversation. At Westport Writers’ Workshop, we are pleased to continue our community outreach and do what we can to help make his vision a reality. This event truly is for everyone.”

Rennie McQuilkin of Simsbury has had an expansive literary career with several published full-length collections of poetry, including The Weathering, Visitations, and, most recently, Going On. Nationally known, his work has appeared in The Atlantic, Poetry, The Yale Review, Yankee, The Hudson Review, The Southern Review, Crazyhorse, The Gettysburg Review, The Christian Science Monitor, The North American Review, and The American Scholar among other publications. He recently received a lifetime achievement award from the Connecticut Center for the Book, which also awarded him its Book Award for Poetry. He was a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship along with several fellowships from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, and has received many other honors and awards. Currently, McQuilkin is the publisher and editor of Antrim House Books, an independent press that publishes the work of Connecticut poets and provides greater exposure and access to the work of local poets.

The honorary position of Connecticut Poet Laureate was established by the state in 1985. As the state’s representative poet, the Poet Laureate serves as an advocate for poetry and promotes the appreciation of and participation in poetry and literary arts activities among Connecticut citizens.

The Connecticut Commission on Culture & Tourism (CCT) appoints a resident as the State Poet Laureate based on the recommendation of a panel of poets and literary professionals.

This evening’s sponsor, Westport Writers’ Workshop is a non-profit literary arts center in Westport, CT. Westport Writers’ holds classes in a welcoming, inclusive environment where all workshop instructors are published writers. Registration is ongoing with classes year-round, at all levels, and in a wide variety of genres.

Westport Writers’ Workshop is located at 3 Sylvan Road South, Westport, CT 06880. The website is The office is open between 9:30-1:30 Monday-Friday. Call 203-227-3250 for information on classes or to make a donation.

For additional information on Westport Writers’ Workshop, including creative writing classes, community events or outreach, or to schedule an interview with the Executive Director, please call Christine Kalafus at 203-227-3250, email: [email protected], or visit

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