About

Photo by Esther Levine

I am the author of the poetry collections The Virgin Formica (Hanging Loose, 2008) and Annoying Diabetic Bitch (Combo Books, 2008); previous collections are Half Angel, Half Lunch (Hard Press, 1998) and the chapbooks Vertigo Seeks Affinities (Belladonna Books, 2006) and Crossing Second Avenue (ABJ Books, Tokyo, 1997), which was published to coincide with a month-long reading tour of five cities in Japan.  A selection of flarf poems appears in Postmodern American Poetry: A Norton Anthology (2nd edition, 2013).  Fiction collections are Ma Vie à Yonago (in French translation from Hachette Littératures, 2005) and In Ordinary Time and The Empty Quarter (Hanging Loose 2005 and 2000).  From 2003-2006 my column, “Seasonal Affect,” appeared in the French fashion magazine Purple; currently my music and book reviews can be found in The Brooklyn Rail and Rain Taxi. In 1998 “Virgo Mater Creatrix,” my libretto in Latin composed for Prix de Rome-winning composer Barbara Kolb, premiered at the International Festival of Women Composers at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  Before moving to New York in 1988, I was active in the Chicago poetry scene, co-founding –editing and –publishing two literary magazines: B City (with Connie Deanovich and Deborah Pintonelli) and letter eX (with Deborah Pintonelli and Carl Watson). I returned to Chicago in 2009 to accept the Columbia College’s “Alumna of the Year” award (because all the other alums were either dead or in prison, apparently).  My other awards include a 2010 Fulbright Specialist grant to teach in Orsk, Russia (uncompleted because I slipped in the hotel bathtub, hit my head, and had to come home), a 2009 Jerome Foundation/SASE grant (as co-recipient/mentor with poet Elisabeth Workman, grantee), two New York Foundation for the Arts poetry fellowships (2007 and 1999), and the 1990 MacArthur Scholarship given through the Brooklyn College MFA poetry program by nomination of Allen Ginsberg (through a gift by John Ashbery — wooooo!).  I teach at the New School, New York University, online for the Chicago School of Poetics and in my home.  I’m a member of the flarf collective.  Awww yeah!  

2 Responses to “About”

  1. E. D. Morin February 17, 2016 at 3:13 pm #

    Hi Sharon, I loved your NYTimes opinion piece on menopause. Is it available for reprint? Would love to include it in a literary anthology I am co-editing, Writing Menopause. Publisher Inanna Publications, due out in spring 2017.
    Elaine

    • Sharon Mesmer February 17, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

      Hi Elaine,

      Thanks for writing. If you’re interested in reprints of the piece, you can contact my editor, Honor Jones, at honor.jones@nytimes.com. I’m not allowed to do anything with it for a month, per the contract.

      Your anthology sounds interesting. Any more info? Please write to me at mesmers@newschool.edu because I’m a slow, slow blogger and hardly check the messages here.

      With good thoughts,
      Sharon

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