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This profile was last updated on 12/13/12  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.
 
Background

Employment History

Education

  • University of Kansas
  • University of California , Berkeley
  • Harvard University
38 Total References
Web References
Kenneth ...
www.poetrysociety.org, 13 Dec 2012 [cached]
Kenneth Irby
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C. S. Giscombe and Katie Peterson on Kenneth Irby
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But then, two thirds of the way through, "Gestures tward Kansas/Someday thatll all be Kenneth Irby."
Kenneth Irby's collected poems, The Intent On, has just been published by North Atlantic Books.
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Kenneth Irby was born in 1936 in Bowie, Texas and raised in Fort Scott, in Kansas. He served in the U.S. Army and holds degrees from Harvard and the University of California, Berkeley. He teaches English at the University of Kansas. He has published nineteen poetry books, including T he Flower of Having Passed Through Paradise in a Dream, Kansas-New Mexico, To Max Douglas, Orexis, Call Steps: Plains, Camps, Situations, Consistories, and Ridge to Ridge among other titles.
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In Call Steps, Kenneth Irby wrote,
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Irby's verse, which are as many and various as the subjects that he chooses to talk about.
Station Hill Press » Kenneth Irby
www.stationhill.org, 23 Jan 2012 [cached]
Kenneth Irby Station Hill Press > Kenneth Irby Station Hill of Barrytown
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Kenneth Irby
Born in the Midwest in 1936, Kenneth Irby beginning writing at early age, recalling that he wrote his first poem when is was 13 after discovering a translation of Rilke's Duino Elegies in Kansas City.
In 1958 Irby attended Harvard University, from where he received his A.M. degree.
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Irby also received an M.L.S. degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and was awarded a Fulbright travel grant as a visiting professor at the University of Copenhagen. He teaches at the University of Kansas.
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Kenneth Irby
Call Steps brings together three collections of a celebrated American poet, representing the years during which Irby wrote what critics consider his most powerful visionary work...
Additional Description More Details
Kenneth Irby
Call Steps brings together three collections of a celebrated American poet, representing the years during which Irby wrote what critics consider his most powerful visionary work.
"No one I know has ever rooted down and plumbed the mystery of American places, land, name, history of our taking space, as Irby does. No one I know has so clearly articulated the living fact, that America is an intelligent thing, and that the distances between purslane and elderberry wine and the bowling alley and Silicon Valley are not inferences of a fall, but are the still arising magniloquences of the sonorous madness of the Platonists, a mystical/musical tradition so close to nonsense that it's the only sense we dare trust. That each human being has a grasp of the sensuous, and that is empire. That each human person has a root awareness of the inadequacy of this place, and that is vision. Europe is only a song we still drift west from. No poet I know speaks that psychic geology of our westering better than Kenneth Irby. -Robert Kelly
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Kenneth Irby
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"Irby's verse is paratactic patchwork, a sewing of memory and hunger, calling forth secret recurrences and the secret of recurrence: occulted genealogies of the kinless garden flowers. - Charles Stein
Kenneth Irby & Pierre ...
poetryproject.org [cached]
Kenneth Irby & Pierre Joris
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Kenneth Irby was born in Bowie, Texas, in 1936, and grew up in Fort Scott, Kansas. He was educated at the University of Kansas, Harvard University, and the University of California, Berkeley. He has lived, worked, served in the U. S. Army, and taught in New Mexico, Nevada, the North Pacific, Massachusetts, Northern California, New York, Colorado, and Copenhagen. He currently lives in Lawrence, Kansas, and teaches in the Department of English at the University of Kansas.
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Tags: Kenneth Irby, Pierre Joris | 2 Comments »
Ad Astra Project - 9 - Kenneth Irby
www.kansaspoets.com, 14 Dec 2007 [cached]
Ken Irby
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Ken Irby (1936 - )
Ken Irby is a Kansas poet who practices projective verse, a form based on physical acts of speechmaking rather than British poetics.
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Irby was not a student at Black Mountain, but he has had contacts with Black Mountain poets throughout his career. This direction in American writing connects to experimental forms now loosely called "Language" poetry. Ed Dorn, a former visiting professor at the University of Kansas, was a student of Olson and close friend of Irby.
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In this elegy, written at Dorn's death, Irby displaces his emotional grief with an image of farm animals in a bare pasture. The title's season is near solstice, the darkest, most mysterious time of year, and also a time when losses are most sharply seen.
This poem begins with the animals viewed at a distance, as though they are almost beyond sight. The narrator sees them skewed by the distance-and also perhaps by grief-so that they appear to be performing on hind legs, "a real dog and pony show. Irby sets this familiar term amongst the more bizarre appearances of the domestic animals. Just when it seems he might explain himself and the soundless "musicians at the window," he changes direction. He shifts from visual images to sounds-the rhyme between "cray" and "they.
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Education: Kenneth Irby, born in Bowie, Texas, was raised in Ft. Scott, Kansas. He received an A.M. from Harvard University and M.L.S. from the University of California-Berkeley.
Career: Irby is an English professor at the University of Kansas. He has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Copenhagen. He has awards from the Fund for Poetry and the Gertrude Stein Awards in Innovative American Poetry. His books include: Studies (First Intensity Press 2001), Ridge to Ridge (Other Wind Press 2001), Call Steps (Station Hill Press 1992), A Set (Tansy 1983), Orexis (Station Hill Press 1981), Catalpa (Tansy 1972), To Max Douglas (Tansy 1971).
------------------------------------- © 2007 Denise Low, AAPP1© Studies: Cuts, Shots Takes, Kenneth Irby, 2001. © 2007 Denise Low photo.
Latta & Hafner on Ken ...
pierrejoris.com, 24 May 2010 [cached]
Latta & Hafner on Ken Irby Latta & Hafner on Ken Irby
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Latta & Hafner on Ken Irby
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Kenneth Irby by Robert Amory
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Two items of note concerning Kenneth Irby, whose book The Intent On: Collected Poems 1962-2006 I made my favorite book of the year (& most necessary one!) on this blog some time ago: A review & meditation by John Latta which you can read here on his Isola di Rifiuti blog, and an article by Josh Hafner, which I reproduce below with his permission.
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Kenneth Irby was 25 years old when he watched one of America's last nuclear explosions fade into the Pacific sky on July 9, 1962. Drafted by the Army, he performed clerical work at a nuclear testing facility on Johnston Island, near Hawaii. He still recalls the moment with great clarity.
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Now 73, with silvery beard and eyes behind thick glasses, Irby is a professor of English at KU and a summation of history and experiences. It's befitting then that he is also a storyteller. More than that, he's a poet and, by most indications, a good one.
Last December, North Atlantic Books released Irby's 'The Intent On: Collected Poems 1962-2006', a 680-page, weighty tome chronicling not only Irby's poetry across four decades, but also his passions, emotions, and stories. In the book, Irby retells his Johnston Island experience in the poem 'For Round Dances':
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William J. Harris, a fellow professor, poet and friend of Irby, said the collection's release is a distinct footnote in a long-overlooked career.
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"This is an extraordinary moment that Ken's collected poems has finally come out," he said. "This is a wonderful moment for him, for American poetry. Many people know the importance of Ken and his contribution, but now the world can know."
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"We were both students of Ken and he has been a definitional person in my life, so that book represents my education of the past 10 years from Ken," Waugh said.
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Ken is in there and it documents a lived life."
That lived life began November 1936 in Bowie, Texas. Irby was born the second of two boys to a doctor and nurse who met at John Hopkins University and married the week the stock market crashed. The family moved to Fort Scott when his father joined a practice there. For a break from small town pace, he would often join his mother on weekend shopping trips to Kansas City, Mo. On one such trip, Irby first encountered the art form that would guide his life.
"She was shopping at a department store downtown called Klines, and like all good department stores it had a book section. And there it had a copy of [Rainer Maria] Rilke's 'Duino Eulogies,'" he said.
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Irby eventually moved to Berekeley, Calif., where Creeley and Dorn nurtured his work, introducing him to a community of authors and poets in the wake of San Francisco's burgeoning poetry scene.
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"The most important thing I've learned from Ken is to engage as much of my experience as possible, that every little thing matters, has significance and can be mined for that significance, that it's worth doing," said Waugh, looking back on the hours spent compiling poems with Irby for 'The Intent On'.
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"The most important thing I've learned from Ken is to engage as much of my experience as possible, that every little thing matters, has significance and can be mined for that significance, that it's worth doing," said Waugh, looking back on the hours spent compiling poems with Irby for 'The Intent On'.
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"That's one of those most important things Ken can teach."
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"Ken will remind you that less important than if you get questions out of him is that you have a meaningful exchange," Console said, "that you know he appreciates you, welcomes you and wants you to be there."
After more than two decades of teaching at the University, Irby gathers books and notes from his office and prepares to leave for a lecture that afternoon. It's spring and flowers are blooming. In a few weeks Irby will once again live out the words of 'Homage', the final poem gracing the last page of his collected works:
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Once again for Kenneth Irby, at 2:15 on a Tuesday afternoon, life and art will interweave.
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