Natasha Trethewey Reading at Bread Loaf

informalauthorphoto-1Natasha Trethewey has been a frequent contributor to NER since 1999, including work in issues 20.2,  22.4,  23.4,  25.4,  27.2,  30.4, and 32.3. Her poems “Genus Narcissus” and “Elegy” are available in full on our website.

She is the 19th United States Poet Laureate and the author of Thrall (2012), Native Guard (Houghton Mifflin), for which she won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize, Bellocq’s Ophelia (Graywolf, 2002), which was named a Notable Book for 2003 by the American Library Association, and Domestic Work (Graywolf, 2000). She is also the author of Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast (University of Georgia Press). A memoir is forthcoming in 2013.

Trethewey read from her book of poetry Thrall at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference on August 19, 2012.


“Mano Prieta”


To listen to the entire reading, or to other readings and lectures from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, visit their iTunesU site.


Thrall: New Poetry by Natasha Trethewey

Thrall by Natasha Trethewey

NER congratulates U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey on the publication of a new poetry collection, Thrall (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). Included in the book is the poem “Elegy,” which originally appeared in this magazine’s pages in 2010. “Elegy” has been frequently republished (including in The New York TImes and The Guardian), and was the subject of a recent essay on its origins and composition at The Atlantic. More excerpts from Thrall, including “Elegy,” “Mano Prieta,” and “Mythology,” may be found online at the book’s ordering pages at Barnes & Noble and Powell’s. As the magazine noted in June, Trethewey began contributing to NER in 1999, and has published poems in issues 20.2, 22.4 (“The Southern Crescent”), 23.4 (“Translation,” “After Your Death”), 25.4 (“Genus Narcissus,” “Myth”), 27.2 (“from Taxonomy”), 30.4 (“Elegy,” “Knowledge”), and 32.3 (“Dr. Samuel Adolphus Cartwright on Dissecting the White Negro, 1851”).

Read Trethewey’s NER poems “Elegy” and “Genus Narcissus.”


Works from NER Chosen for “Best American”

Otto Penzler has selected Kathleen Ford’s “Man on the Run” 31.4 for Best American Mystery Stories 2012.

For Best American Poetry 2012, Mark Doty has chosen four NER poems:

• Amy Glynn Greacen, Helianthus Annus (Sunflower) (32.2)
• Reginald Dwayne Betts, “At the End of a Life, a Secret” (31.4)
• James Allen Hall, “One Train’s Survival Depends on the Other Derailed” (32.2)
• Natasha Trethewey, “Dr. Samuel Adolphus Cartwright on Dissecting the White Negro, 1851” (32.3)

News & Notes | NER in Best American Poetry 2011

Editor Kevin Young selected the following poems from NER for The Best American Poetry 2011:

Jennifer Grotz, “Poppies” (31.1); Eric Pankey, “Cogitatio Mortis” (also 31.1); and Natasha Trethewey, “Elegy” (30.4).

Best American Short Stories 2011 noted fiction from NER among its “distinguished stories” of the year:

Kirstin Allio, “Green” (31.3); Thomas Gough, “The Evening’s Peace” (30.4), Beth Lordan, “A Useful Story” (31.1); Christine Sneed, “Interview with the Second Wife” (31.4).

Best American Travel Writing 2011 cited Eric Calderwood’s “The Road to Damascus” (31.3) in its “Notable Travel Writing of 2010.”


An excerpt from Trethewey’s poem “Elegy“:

I think by now the river must be thick
with salmon. Late August, I imagine it

as it was that morning: drizzle needling
the surface, mist at the banks like a net

settling around us—everything damp
and shining. That morning, awkward

and heavy in our hip waders, we stalked
into the current and found our places—

you upstream a few yards, and out
far deeper. You must remember how

the river seeped in over your boots,
and you grew heavy with that defeat.