Dorianne Laux was born in 1952 in Augusta, Maine and is of Irish, French and Algonquin Indian heritage. In 1983 she moved to Berkeley, California where she began writing in earnest. Five years later she earned her B.A. degree in English from Mills College. Laux's first book of poems, Awake, published by BOA Editions in 1990, was nominated for the San Francisco Bay Area Book Critics Award for Poetry. Her poetry has appeared in numerous American journals and anthologies. She has received poetry fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and the National Endowment for the Arts. Currently, she teaches creative writing at the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon.
What We Carryby Dorianne Laux
Finalist, 1994 National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry. Dorianne Laux's poetry is a poetry of risk; it goes to the very edge of extinction to find the hard facts that need to be sung. What We Carry includes poems of survival, poems of healing, poems of affirmation and poems of celebration.
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Adrienne Rich describes Dorianne Laux's poetry as 'tough, sensual...with physical details that add up to more than their sum...' It's what I like about Laux's poetry, she is sensual, sexual at the same time a tough woman. Her poetry is much like Kim Addonizio's, who is one of my favorite contemporary poets. And they are friends, so it is no surprise that Addonizio has lead me to Laux. Dorianne's poems range from poems about the innocence of childhood to the raw, sexual poems that close the volume. Dorianne Laux writes the kind of poetry that I love to read. I highly recommend her work, especially if you are a fan of Millay, Addonizio, Kate Light, or April Lindner.