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Kara van de Graaf is a poet, teacher, and editor living in Salt Lake City, Utah. She holds a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she was a Chancellor’s Fellow and a Distinguished Dissertation Fellow, an MFA in Writing from University of Pittsburgh, where she was a K. Leroy Irvis Fellow, and a BA in English from Purdue University. Currently, she serves as Assistant Professor of English at Utah Valley University.
Her first collection of poems, Spitting Image (SIU Press, 2018), won the Crab Orchard First Book Prize in Poetry. Individual poems appear widely in national literary journals, including The Southern Review, AGNI, New England Review, Crazyhorse, Alaska Quarterly Review, Gettysburg Review, and the anthology Best New Poets. Other honors include the Hoepfner Award from Southern Humanities Review, an Academy of American Poets Prize, a fellowship from Vermont Studio Center, the Tennessee Williams Scholarship from Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and scholarships from the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and The New York State Summer Writers Institute.
A former poetry editor for Cream City Review, she is currently the editor for Lightbox Poetry, an online educational resource for poetry in the classroom, which she co-founded in 2015 with the poet Richie Hofmann.