She is also an associate editor of the Longman Southern literature anthology, Voices of the American South (2004), a comprehensive survey of pivotal works in the Southern literary tradition, and co-authored, with Kiem Do, the non-fiction Vietnam memoir, Counterpart (US Naval Institute Press, May, 1998), a 1999 History Book Club featured alternative.Her other accomplishments include a Fulbright Scholarship to Vilnius Pedagogical University (Lithuania), an Academy of Poets Prize, New Orleans Writer-in-Residence terms at Tulane University, and a Pushcart nomination.Julie Kane’s most recent poetry collection, Jazz Funeral (Story Line Press), was selected by David Mason as the winner of the 2009 Donald Justice Poetry Prize.Her collection, Rhythm & Booze (University of Illinois Press, 2003), was chosen by Maxine Kumin as a National Poetry Series winner and was one of four finalists for the 2005 Poets’ Prize.JK: She committed suicide just four or five weeks into my first semester at BU, in October of 1974. It happened on the weekend, I remember, and my aunt — the one who was keeping my cat — told me at breakfast, because she didn’t want me to hear it on the news the way she had.That was not a good year for BU’s creative writing faculty.It was a stroke of luck that I landed there, because they had an exceptionally lively poetry scene in the early 1970s. But really, we were all friends, and the atmosphere was so heady, so exciting — we were eating and breathing poetry.
Derek Alger: Did you want to be a poet from an early age? The first day of class every year in grade school, I would always bring my English book home and read every single poem in it that same night.
My father graduated from high school in 1943 and got drafted into World War II.
When he got out, he was able to go to college on the GI Bill.
Maybe I’ll be able to sell my copy on e Bay to fund my retirement.
DA: You had to make quite a choice when it came to grad school.
And then Diane Ackerman took two of my poems for Epoch when she was the poetry editor — I was an undergrad and she was in the Ph D program, so I was thrilled beyond belief that she considered me a “real poet.” T.