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Adrienne Su’s Reading and Discussion of Peach State

By Anna Gwiazda

On Thursday, September 31, 2021, Monmouth University’s English Department graduate students from Craft Seminar (EN 615) and Literatures of Immigration (EN 533), along with Dr. Mihaela Moscaliuc, hosted a reading and discussion of Adrienne Su’s newly published poetry book, Peach State (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2021). Su is a critically acclaimed author of five poetry collections, and a Creative Writing professor at Dickinson College (PA). She earned a B.A. at Harvard and Radcliffe College and an M.F.A from the University of Virginia. Su has received many awards including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and a Barbara Deming

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Foundation Grant, as well as residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell, The Frost Place, The Virginia Center for Creative Arts, and the Fine Arts Work Center. Her poems can be found on websites such as the Poetry Daily and Poem-a-Day, and they also appear in several anthologies such as The Hungry Ear, The New American Poets, Asian American Poetry, and The Norton Introduction to Literature.

Dr. Moscaliuc introduced Professor Su’s newly published book of poems, Peach State. Su’s poems are often described as food-centric. The poet described the rationale behind the creation of Peach State. She explained how the poems were based on foods to reflect on how the Chinese American community has transformed her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia, throughout her lifetime. She also mentioned that her poems addressed deeper social issues such as her identity as a Chinese American, classism, food waste, and immigrant challenges.

Audience members were then fortunate to listImage of Adriann Suen to Su read several poems from Peach State, including “Lychee Express”, “Kiwi Fruit”, “Maple Syrup”, and “Black Sesame.” The discussion concluded with Professor Su answering questions from the audience about crafting her poetry, advice for writing poetry, questions that were specific to poems she had written, and more.

Please click here to view Adrienne Su’s website.