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August 6, 2010

Professor publishes second book of poetry

Jack Heflin, Professor of English at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, recently published his second book, Local Hope, a critically acclaimed collection of 43 poems.

The editors of the book, published by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Press, note that the poems “reflect the author’s obsessions with language and experience in the distorted, imaginative mirrors that poetry provides.

In settings that wander from Montana to Louisiana, from the ragged fairways of abandoned golf courses to the steely rooms of radiology, these poems register an elegiac embrace of the past, record the ecstasies and dislocations of the commonplace, and stare back with a wide-eyed curiosity at our cultural oddities.”

Poet John Kinsella said, “Local Hope is a declaration of belief and confirmation in the face of uncertainty and disturbance. Heflin troubles over the traumas, contradictions, ennui, and pleasure of day-to-day life.

The rich word selection, the absolute control of line, and the versatile syntax take the reader into a weird, bizarre, and yet surprisingly familiar crisis of existence.”

And Poet Ava Haymon writes, “We are given Whitmanesque catalogs of people and things, interacting but remaining exactly themselves. Here, the wild and voluminous variety is not redeemed through art; the poems steadfastly refuse to make that claim.”

Heflin’s first collection, The Map of Leaving, won the Montana First Book Award. His poems have appeared in many journals, including The Antioch Review, Poetry Northwest, Nimrod, Willow Springs, the Missouri Review, Green Mountains Review and Poetry East, and in several anthologies.

He has also earned writing fellowships from the Missouri Arts Council, the Montana Arts Council and the Louisiana Division of the Arts. In 2008, the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities awarded him an Individual Achievement award in the Humanities.

Heflin, formerly an Endowed Chair of English at ULM, also co-directs ULM’s creative writing program and co-edits turnrow and turnrow books.

Local Hope is available for sale from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Press or from

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