Washington College Staff Recognized for Poetry Prowess

grayscale edited.LindsayLusby_JustinNashgrayscale edited.KQAndrews_CourtesyofAndrewsBy Mai Do

Elm Staff Writer

Two WC poets, Rose O’Neill Literary House Assistant Director Lindsay Lusby, Class of 2008, and Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing Dr. Kimberly Quiogue Andrews, have earned awards for their forthcoming work.

Lusby’s debut poetry collection, “Catechesis: a postpastoral,” was selected by Kimiko Hahn for the 2018 Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize and will be published by The University of Utah Press in June 2019. Andrews is the author of “A Brief History of Fruit,” which was selected for the 2018 Akron Poetry Prize by Diane Seuss and will be published by the University of Akron Press.

Lusby is the author of two chapbooks, “Blackbird Whitetail Redhand” and “Imago.” She is also the winner of the 2015 Fairy Tale Review Poetry Contest. Along with serving as the Assistant Director of the Rose O’Neill Literary House at WC, she is also Assistant Editor for the Literary House Press and Managing Editor for Cherry Tree, the national literary journal. 

“A lot of [‘Catechesis’] focuses on fairy tales, the tradition of retelling fairy tales, recombining different ones to make new ones, incorporating some horror,” Lusby said of her new book.

“A lot of that is the postpastoral, or the necropastoral, nature but also the negative side of that,” she said.

Lusby said that “Catechesis” was also influenced by “growing up a girl in the violent world we live in,” and that, “strangely, elements of faith find their way in there.”

Andrews is the author of “BETWEEN,” which won the 2017 New Women’s Voices prize from Finishing Line Press. According to her profile on the WC website, Andrews is also a two-time Academy of American Poets prize winner, Pushcart prize nominee, and the recipient of the Ralph Cohen Prize for scholarship from New Literary History for her essay, “Trade Secrets: Poetry in the Teaching Machine.”

Her next book, “A Brief History of Fruit,” tackles transpacific identity and explores Andrews’ place “between the United States and the Philippines in the search for a sense of geographical and racial belonging,” according to the University of Akron Press website.

“[‘A Brief History of Fruit’] is a type of family history as told through another form of between-ness: my mother is Southeast Asian and my father is a white American,” Andrews said. “So I’m somewhere in the middle, and the book is about the odd geographical, sociopolitical, and cultural displacements and belongings that result from that.”

Aside from teaching creative writing at WC, Andrews is also a literary critic and is working on several other literary projects.

“I’m also working on a scholarly book about the relationship between creative writing, experimental poetry and the American university, and after that I’m going to start a creative project on Bethlehem Steel and labor history,” Andrews said. “I’m from Bethlehem, Pa., so that will be a hometown project. I’m lucky to be here at WC, where home isn’t so far away.”

Lusby and Andrews gave a reading together at the Lit House on Sept. 5. The two poets read work from their chapbooks and had copies available for purchase and signing.

“I feel like they are inspirations to the students and also to me, as their colleague,” Associate Professr of English and Director of the Literary House Dr. James Allen Hall said. “They also exhibit the strength of the writing community at WC.”

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