The new road runs along the old road. I can see it
still imprinted on the earth, not twenty feet away
as I drive west past silos and farmsteads, fruit stands and hogs.
Kurt Brown was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1944 and grew up on Long Island and in Connecticut. He received a BA from the University of Connecticut and an MA from the University of Colorado.
Brown founded the Aspen Writer’s Conference, now called Summer Words, in 1976. It was there that he met his wife, Belgian-American poet Laure-Anne Bosselaar, as well as the poet Stephen Dunn, who writes that Brown’s poetry “plumbs and reexamines the familiar language of our culture, and simultaneously is a personal search for the authentic.” Brown later wrote an account of this period, entitled Lost Sheep: Aspen’s Counterculture in the 1970s—A Memoir (Conundrum Press, 2012).
He was the author of several full-length poetry collections, including Time-Bound (Tiger Bark Press, 2012), No Other Paradise: Poems (Red Hen Press, 2010), Future Ship (Red Hen Press, 2008), and Return of the Prodigals (Four Way Books, 1999). He also published six chapbooks. A selected collection of his poetry, I’ve Come This Far to Say Hello: Poems Selected and New (Tiger Bark Press), was published in 2014. Charles Simic praises “the range and originality, the beauty and depth, of the poems in this posthumous book.”
He was also a prolific editor and compiled several poetry anthologies, including Killer Verse: Poems of Murder and Mayhem (Everyman’s Library, 2011). With Laure-Anne Bosselaar, he edited Night Out: Poems about Hotels, Motels, Restaurants and Bars (Milkweed Editions, 1997) and translated The Plural of Happiness: Selected Poems of Herman de Coninck (Oberlin College Press, 2006).
A founding director of AWP’s Writers’ Conferences & Centers, he also served on the boards of Sarabande Books and of Poets House. He taught at Sarah Lawrence College, Georgia Tech, and Westminster College and lived most recently in Santa Barbara, California. He died on June 16, 2013.
I’ve Come This Far to Say Hello: Poems Selected and New (Tiger Bark Press, 2014)
Time-Bound (Tiger Bark Press, 2012)
No Other Paradise: Poems (Red Hen Press, 2010)
Future Ship (Red Hen Press, 2008)
Fables from the Ark: Poems (WordTech Communications, 2004)
More Things in Heaven and Earth (Four Way Books, 2002)
Return of the Prodigals (Four Way Books, 1999)
Killer Verse: Poems of Murder and Mayhem (Everyman’s Library, 2011)
Conversation Pieces: Poems That Talk to Other Poems (Everyman’s Library, 2007)
Blues for Bill (University of Akron Press, 2005)
The Measured Word: On Poetry and Science (University of Georgia Press, 2001)
Verse & Universe: Poems about Science and Mathematics (Milkweed Editions, 1998)
Night Out: Poems about Hotels, Motels, Restaurants and Bars (Milkweed Editions, 1997)
Facing the Lion: Writers on Life and Craft (Beacon Press, 1996)
Drive, They Said: Poems about Americans and Their Cars (Milkweed Editions, 1994)
Lost Sheep: Aspen’s Counterculture in the 1970s—A Memoir (Conundrum Press, 2012)