Poetry Reading Honors Professor Jim Thomas

Truman will posthumously honor long-time professor Jim Thomas with a poetry reading from his new publication “Brief Tracks” at 7 p.m. Dec. 3 in Baldwin Hall Auditorium.

Thomas taught at Truman for 30 years before retiring in 1994. Widely regarded as one of the state’s finest poets, he passed away in February 2009.

The poetry reading, sponsored by the University’s Department of English and Linguistics, will include readings by family members, former colleagues, current faculty, former students and Missouri’s Poet Laureate Walter Bargen.

Copies of “Brief Tracks” may be purchased at the reading for $20 and are available at bookstores. All royalties benefit the Jim Thomas Scholarship Fund through the Truman State University Foundation.

The reading is free and open to the public. President and Mrs. Darrell W. Krueger will host a reception at the University Residence following the reading.

In addition to “Brief Tracks,” Thomas published more than 350 poems, stories and essays in leading literary journals. Nature, family and the many miracles within the commonplace were favorite themes Thomas incorporated in his work.

Thomas taught composition, creative writing and American literature during his tenure at Truman. He also served as Director of Graduate Studies and Acting Head of the Division of Language and Literature.

“Brief Tracks” was collected and edited by colleague Joe Benevento, professor of English, and was published by Truman State University Press. Benevento will also serve as host during the reading.
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