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headshotPoet Joanne Diaz is headed to VCCA’s Mt. San Angelo in January 2022 as the fourth recipient of the Richard S. and Julia Louise Reynolds Poetry Fellowship, a fully-funded residency at VCCA supported by the Richard S. Reynolds Foundation.

Joanne Diaz is the author of two poetry collections, The Lessons (winner of the Gerald Cable Book Award in 2011) and My Favorite Tyrants (winner of the Brittingham Prize in Poetry in 2014).

In residence at Mt. San Angelo, Diaz intends to focus on revising poems for a third book project, Septimania. “In this manuscript, I grapple with how a poem can point beyond itself and engage with multiple voices, ideas, histories, and landscapes,” says Diaz. “I cannot overstate how grateful I am to have this time at VCCA. During my stay, I will have the opportunity to experiment with a poetry project that will require my full attention. I look forward to seeing what surprises this work will yield.”

Diaz’s poetry connects popular culture with political concerns, crosses many geographies and time periods, and employs a variety of rhetorical strategies to explore charged emotional material. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in American Poetry Review, Massachusetts Review, New England Review, Poetry, River Styx, and Waxwing.

Diaz is a professor of English at Illinois Wesleyan University who received her PhD in English Literature from Northwestern University and her MFA from New York University, where she was a New York Times Foundation fellow. With Abram Van Engen, she is the co-host of the Poetry for All podcast. With Ian Morris, she is the co-editor of The Little Magazine in Contemporary America (University of Chicago Press, 2015).

She is the recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Illinois Arts Council, and Sustainable Arts Foundation. She has received fellowships for her time at Ragdale and the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts. This will be her first residency with VCCA.

The Richard S. and Julia Louise Reynolds Poetry Fellowship is a fully-funded VCCA residency open to poets. Named for Richard S. (“R.S.”) Reynolds and his wife, Julia Louise, this fellowship reflects their shared passion for poetry. The VCCA residency at Mt. San Angelo includes a private bedroom with private bath, a separate individual studio, and three meals a day in a community of cross-disciplinary artists. Previous Reynolds Poetry Fellows include poets Amanda Galvan Huynh, John Poch, and Patricia Spears Jones.