Patricia Dienstfrey

Introduction to Four Papers on Barbara Guest


The idea for a panel honoring the poet Barbara Guest came up after the Association of Writers and Writing Programs Conference in Austin, 2006. For many writers who knew Barbara Guest and her work, this event, which took place just weeks after her death on February 15th, cut into a period of mourning. The sense of compounded loss prompted Elizabeth Robinson to propose that a panel celebrating Guest's life and work be offered at the 2007 AWP Conference in Atlanta. Five writers were invited to present informal talks, formal papers, or some combination. One panelist, Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, chose to share personal memories of Barbara Guest just for the occasion. The others, whose papers appear here, were Catherine Wagner, Elizabeth Robinson, Andrew Joron, and Patricia Dienstfrey.

Patricia Dienstfrey, July, 2007