Norman Dubie is one of America’s most important and innovative contemporary poets. Since the publication of his first volume of verse when he was twenty-three years old, Dubie has, on the average, published one book every two years, accumulating an impressive body of work. At a time when American poetry has been both praised and criticized for its preoccupation with intimate personal experience, Dubie has sought to see the world through the eyes of historical figures from many different times and places—painters, fellow writers, individuals of all sorts—whose distinctive perspectives he adopts for the duration of a poem.
In 1976, Dubie won the Bess Hokin Prize from Poetry and the Modern Poetry Association for “The Negress, Her Monologue of Dark Crepe.” He has also received creative writing fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation. In honor of Dubie’s literary achievements, the University of Iowa, where he received his M.F.A. degree, houses the Norman Dubie Collection in its library. In 2002, Dubie won the PEN Center USA Literary Award for The Mercy Seat.
Anderson, Jon. “On Norman Dubie’s Poems.” Iowa Review 3 (Fall, 1973): 65-67. This article offers a reading of Dubie’s work on two levels: the empathetic, which results from the poet’s attempt at communication, and the aesthetic, which is the reader’s personal judgment. Anderson’s interpretation utilizes both sensibilities, although the latter is clearly favored in his examination of Alehouse Sonnets, “The Dugouts,” and “Northwind Escarpment,” among others.
Clark, Kevin. “Synchronous Isolations: ’Elegies for the Ocher Deer on the Walls at Lascaux’ by Norman Dubie.” American Poetry 5, no. 2 (Winter, 1988): 12-32. Clark draws upon the concepts of Carl Jung, Albert Einstein, and Søren Kierkegaard to illuminate Dubie’s vision and technique in this important long poem. This is an exemplary study, its methodology applicable to much of Dubie’s work.
Dubie, Norman. “Return from Silence.” Interview by Mary Gannon. Poets and Writers 32, no. 6 (November/December, 2004): 32-42. Dubie discusses, among other topics, his return to publishing, his mentors, his book Ordinary Mornings of a Coliseum, and how practicing Tibetan Buddhism has influenced his writing.
Leavitt, Michele. “Dubie’s ’Amen.’” Explicator 56, no. 1 (Fall, 1997): 55-56. A close reading...
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