Penn State

Erin Murphy - Professor of English, Penn State Altoona

Book Title: Dome of the Hidden Pavilion: New Poems

Author: James Tate

Book Description:

There are many things I could say about Jim Tate (1943-2015). He had a rare gift. He was my mentor and thesis advisor in the UMass M.F.A. program, where he taught for 45 years. He was wildly funny even though -- or because -- he knew darkness. But what I remember most was his laugh. If you said something that hit him just the right way, he was overtaken by a primal joy, like a little seizure of appreciation. It was as coveted as his praise for a poem. We spent so much of my three-hour thesis defense laughing that my face hurt. His laugh: that, too, was a gift.

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