Edward Hirsch is the celebrated author of nine books of poetry. He is also the author of “A Poet's Glossary,” a complete compendium of poetry terms and the author of the bestseller about poetry, “How to Read a Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry.” He has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Prix de Rome. He is an international advocate for poetry and serves as a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. He taught creative writing at Wayne State University and the University of Houston and is now president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, which offers fellowships to those engaged in any field of knowledge and creation of the arts.
Poet and essayist Michael Sowder is a professor of English and an affiliated professor of religious studies at Utah State University. The themes of his poetry and writing include wilderness, fatherhood, poetics, Buddhism, yoga, and spirituality. A long-time meditation teacher, he is the
founder of the Amrita Sangha for Integral Spirituality, an nonprofit organization dedicated to exploring and teaching the wisdom of the world’s contemplative traditions. Part of his work includes teaching meditation and creative writing in jails and prisons. His books include the poetry collections “House Under the Moon,” and “The Empty Boat,” and a study of Walt Whitman’s poetry titled “Whitman’s Ecstatic Union.”