Award Winning Poet John Hodgen to visit Dublin - February 11-13


by Henry Walters

This week we will be hosting a writer named John Hodgen for three days, Monday-Wednesday. You'll recognize him by his baseball cap and a slightly bowlegged way of walking, as if he had just dismounted from a long ride on horseback. 

As I tried to say this morning, it's not his personality or his private experiences that have led the English Department to invite him here, but something peculiar and jaw-dropping that he does with language: the ability to gather all the ribbons off a clothesline simultaneously while sledding underneath it at top speed. The ribbons of beauty, the ribbons of history, the ribbons of grief, of delight, of absurdity, of love: all of them at once! He has very large hands. 

John Hodgen lives in Shrewsbury, MA. He is Visiting Assistant Professor of English at Assumption College, and also teaches at Mount Wachusett Community College and the Worcester Art Museum. He is the author of Heaven & Earth Holding Company, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2010, Grace, (winner of the 2005 AWP Donald Hall Prize in Poetry), In My Father's House (winner of the 1993 Bluestem Award from Emporia State University in Kansas), and Bread Without Sorrow (2001, winner of the 2002 Balcones Poetry Prize) He has won the Grolier Prize for Poetry, an Arvon Foundation Award, the Yankee Magazine Award for Poetry, first prize in the Red Brick Review poetry competition, a Massachusetts Cultural Council Finalist Award in Poetry in 2000. He won the Chad Walsh Poetry Prize for the best poems published in Beloit Poetry Journal in 2008.

Several of his poems have been nominated for The Pushcart Prize, and he was one of five finalists in the Massachusetts Artists Foundation Fellowship Program. He was a finalist in Houghton Mifflin's New Poetry Series, Cleveland State University's Poetry Center Prize, Carnegie Mellon University's Poetry Series, and Northeastern University's Samuel French Morse Poetry Award. John's work has been included in the anthologies Witness and Wait: Thirteen Poets From New England and Something Understood ; We Teach Them All: Teachers Writing About Diversity; and Bone Cages.

The purpose of his visit is to bring a new perspective to the reading and writing that you are already doing: why you are doing it, what it's worth, and how you might make it even more meaningful, both to yourself and to others. 

Copies of poems by John Hodgen will be left in your mailboxes this afternoon and on the radiator in the hallway of the lower FAB. You can also find poems he has written here.

And listed below are a few times during his visit when you might meet with John, ask him questions, show him a piece of your writing, or chew over your own ideas with him:


11:30 - 12:00 Lunch 
6:00 - 6:45  Dinner
7:00 - 9:00 Tea at Writer's Cabin


8:30 - 10:00  Library "office hours"
11:30 - 12:00  Lunch


6:30 - 7:30  CLOSING READING (Putnam Art Gallery)

Your English teachers hope that the spark he brings to campus will keep smoldering in your own reading and writing, long after he leaves

Moby-Dick Class Embarks for New Bedford 

Moby-Dick Class Embarks for New Bedford 

This winter, eight Dublin students have spent part of each night curled up with Moby-Dick, a book famous for inducing seasickness in even the strongest stomachs. The story--an "ungodly, godlike" captain desperate to wreak vengeance on the sperm whale that took his leg--has drawn the class into deep waters: history, biology, psychology, religion, metaphysics, allegory...all subjects have a place aboard Herman Melville's Pequod. 

On February 1st, the search for the famed "White Whale" finally overflowed its two covers and led its pursuers south to New Bedford, Massachusetts, home of the world-renowned Whaling Museum.

Dublin School Writers Take Home Accolades from the Scholastic Writing Awards

Dublin School Writers Take Home Accolades from the Scholastic Writing Awards

Every winter, Dublin School—alongside many New Hampshire public, private, parochial, and home schools—submits work to the Scholastic Writing Awards. The Scholastic Writing Awards invites students across the state to submit work in categories ranging from critical essay to flash fiction to poetry to science fiction and fantasy and more. After students blindly submit work, panelists search for works that “best exemplify originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision.” This year, of over 780 submissions, only approximately 160 pieces received distinction.

Dublin School’s Writing Center: Empowering Better Writers

The Writing Center is run by eleven juniors and seniors who are dedicated to helping other writers develop as writers. These eleven tutors, some of whom have been involved with the Writing Center for three years, went through a training process that involved learning about the Center’s goals, studying The Task’s eight principles, talking through potential scenarios, reviewing grammar and punctuation rules, and practicing tutoring with mock tutoring sessions.

Poetry Out Loud Finalists Announced

The last week of December before Holiday Break was full of poetry. The Fountain Arts Building corridors conducted echoing strands of Emily Dickinson’s, Langston Hughes’, Alfred Lord Tennyson’s, Simon Ortiz’s, and Helen Mort’s poetry. Students stood in stairwells, on stages, and in locker groves to recite with their friends and classmates.

At Dublin, all English 11 and AP English Language and Competition courses do a three-and-a-half week unit on Poetry Out Loud. Poetry Out Loud is a national recitation competition that holds competitions in every state. As the organization advertises, since 2005, Poetry Out Loud has grown to reach more than 3 million students and 50,000 teachers across America. Poetry Out Loud uses a pyramid structure that starts at the classroom audition level. Winners advance to a school-wide competition, then to a regional and/or state competition, and ultimately to the National Finals. Contestants are evaluated for their voice and articulation, physical presence, dramatic appropriateness, evidence of understanding, and overall performance.

Writing in Quiet Spaces: Jonathan Phinney on Publication, Rejection, and Process

Writing in Quiet Spaces:  Jonathan Phinney on Publication, Rejection, and Process

Jonathan Phinney, Learning Specialist, and English Instructor, was recently published in Saint Ann’s Review. His short story, “A Quiet Story,” begins: “Scott left the house in a rush. Everything was gray and strewn with some kind of debris: the tattered Christmas decorations hanging from unpainted houses, the peeling sign in front of the supermarket, the ripped-up spruce shrubs in front of the bank from the big storm back in November. Even the way the snow banks melted along the sides of the road looked like ruin.”

Layman's Way - Number 2 (Spring 2017)

Layman's Way - Number 2 (Spring 2017)

The second issue of Dublin's literary magazine - Layman's Way has been released. We have created a new website independent of the Dublin School website to host Layman's Way (  The new issue features work from current Dublin students (Owen Mortner '18;  Mia Brady '18; Katia Dermott '17; Clare Fowler '18; and, Wes Strubbe '18), recent alumni (Emily Bascom '15; Sydney Clarke '16; and Talia Cohen '15) and various friends of the school (Alice Fogel; John Sieracki; J. Kates; and Brooks Robards).

Self, Sexuality, and Society: Holistic, Literary Sexuality Education

“Taking Self, Sexuality, and Society was the best mistake I ever made,” says senior Geoff Erickson.

“The class truly is fun and interesting, and I am learning so much that I had never even thought of before,” he says. “I highly recommend the class, especially to people like myself who think it’s not for them, try it for at least one term.”