Cut & Paste — Poet Carl Phillips


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Carl Phillips was teaching Latin to high school students when a poet changed his life. Phillips had long been an avid reader and wrote poems casually, but he never conceived of poetry as a career path. The poet Martin Espada visited the school where he worked and led a workshop for faculty. He saw what Phillips wrote in an exercise and suggested he apply for a state grant. He got the grant. Then he won a poetry contest that led to publication of his first collection, “In The Blood,” in 1992. The next year he secured a position on the faculty at Washington University, where he remains a professor of English and leads a workshop in the graduate creative writing program. Many awards and honors later, Phillips published his 15th poetry collection in March this year.

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