Poetry Center 60th Anniversary

Poetry Center's 60th Anniversary

This fall, we celebrate the day 60 years ago that legendary poet Robert Frost and our founder Ruth Stephan dedicated the Poetry Center on the University of Arizona campus. Below, you find a range of ways we are marking the anniversary this fall. Whether you are new to the Center or a familiar friend, we hope you’ll explore and enjoy these programs.

November 17, 2020

A Virtual Celebration with friends, family, and poets from around the country 

On Tuesday, November 17, 2020 the University of Arizona Poetry Center turns 60! We will host a virtual celebration with friends, family, and poets from around the country, as we honor one of the great houses of poetry. We hope you’ll join us for this special occasion to support the Poetry Center and celebrate together. 


5:00PM (PST) 6:00PM (MST) 7:00PM (CST) 8:00PM (EST)

Join us for a virtual celebration on this momentous occasion. Anniversary wishes, historical highlights, and toasts with special guests will be shared throughout evening. Hear messsages from Joy Harjo, Carolyn Forché, Sandra Cisneros, Alberto Ríos, Robert Hass, Brenda Hillman, Carl Phillips, Li-Young Lee, Naomi Shihab Nye, Forrest Gander, Kimiko Hahn and Aimee Nezhukumatathil.

Tickets are $60. Just one ticket per household required.

Register by Oct. 29

Guests will receive a gift box with treats, favors, and a facsimile edition monograph featuring select hand-written entries from the Lois Shelton Poets Cottage guest book.



Interactive 360 Tour of the Poetry Center 

Join the Poetry Center staff and poets Robert Hass, Carolyn Forche, Brenda Hillman, Li-Young Lee and Carl Phillips for a self-guided tour of the Center -- its history, its programs, and its enduring legacy.


Visual History of the Poetry Center

This visual timeline presents key Poetry Center milestones over the past 60 years, including photographs, letters, posters, and broadsides from our archives.

60 Books for 60 Years

This online exhibit documents sixty new additions to the Poetry Center’s Rare Book Room, made possible by the Center’s new special acquisitions endowment. Highlights include artist’s books, rare books by celebrated poets, and books by poets working in the American Southwest. These new acquisitions represent the exciting breadth and range of American poetry in the past 60 years.

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Directors’ Choice

Director's Choice

Past and present Poetry Center leadership has selected historical readings from the Center’s audiovisual archive, Voca, to present at virtual listening parties this fall. Readers from each decade of the Center’s existence include Robert Creeley, Adrienne Rich, Lucille Clifton, W.S. Merwin, Alberto Rios, Ofelia Zepeda, Sherwin Bitsui and Terrance Hayes.

20 Arizona Poets

Arizona is home to a plethora of acclaimed and much-beloved poets. This online exhibition features 20 Arizona poets who represent diverse viewpoints, styles and backgrounds, and all of whom have an important connection to Arizona.

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