Ken Brewer

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The inaugural Ken Brewer Celebration of Writing will take place on Thursday, Sept. 16, at 6 p.m. at the USU Amphitheater on Old Main Hill, featuring poetry readings, a live jazz ensemble, and an open mic.

The main event will be a reading by the nature writer Christopher Cokinos, who was a friend of Brewer’s and is the author or editor of seven books of poetry and prose.

Brewer was a USU professor of English from 1968 to 2000 and the author of eight books of poetry and over 300 individual poems that he published in literary magazines around the country.

In 2003, Brewer was named Utah poet laureate and used his role to promote poetry readings around the state. Over his long career as a teacher and writer, Brewer encouraged thousands of Utahns to find their voice and to read their poetry out loud. Brewer died in 2006.

“This celebration honors that tremendous legacy by doing what Brewer himself loved best,” a press release on Thursday’s event stated.

Christopher Cokinos taught at Utah State University for nearly 10 years before taking a position at the University of Arizona. Since then he’s returned every year to a cabin in Logan Canyon. His love of the Wasatch Range and Utah is reflected in his work, which includes “The Fallen Sky: An Intimate History of Shooting Stars,” among other books. He’s working on a book about the moon and covers space sciences for such publications as SkyNews, and Sky & Telescope.

This planned annual event has been made possible by a gift from Glenn and Anne Wilde, who were friends and colleagues of Brewer’s at USU.

This event is free and open to the public. Social distancing and masks are requested.

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