Ellen Bass is one of my favorite poets and people. Her work is instructional, showing us not only how to create beauty on the page, but also how to live it off the page. She calls herself a praise poet because she never forgets that we’re going to die – which is why each poem has so much gravity and so much light in it. She is one of my mentors, and a writer who I continue to learn from. You do not have to be someone who writes poetry to get a lot from this conversion on finding joy and beauty in dark times.
Interview :: January 28, 2021
Ellen Bass’s most recent collection, Indigo, was published by Copper Canyon Press in 2020. Her other poetry books include Like a Beggar, The Human Line, and Mules of Love. Her poems appear frequently in The New Yorker, American Poetry Review, and many other journals. Among her awards are Fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, The NEA, and The California Arts Council, The Lambda Literary Award, and three Pushcart Prizes. A Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, Bass founded poetry workshops at Salinas Valley State Prison and the Santa Cruz, California jails, and teaches in the MFA writing program at Pacific University. She also teaches a popular poetry series called Craft Talks.
If you’re inspired to learn more about Ellen and to study with her, please check her out here to discover more. https://www.ellenbass.com/events/living-room-craft-talks-the-third-series/