Winner of the 2010 INDY poetry contest, Robin Kirk celebrates the release of her first poetry collection, Peculiar Motion at The Regulator Bookshop. Called "fierce" by poet Eliza Griswold, Peculiar Motion is an intimate collection that spans a lifetime, from first love to encroaching age.
Kirk is an accessible poet who manages to jolt the reader with powerful language and a sharp sense of humor. Kirk named the collection "Peculiar Motion" after the astronomical term describing the motion of galaxies. She came across “peculiar motion” when reading about the big bang theory -- while much of the universe is expanding, a few galaxies are actually moving inwards, contrary to the theory's predictions. Like life, things don't always go according to plan and that is what this collection of poetry is about.
“Kirk stares at the beloved and ruined world around her without blinking. They are quiet and wondrous rebellions." -- Eliza Griswold, author of Wideawake Field
Robin Kirk is the author of numerous books, including The Tiger King (fiction), More Terrible Than Death: Massacres, Drugs and America’s War in Colombia (PublicAffairs) and The Monkey’s Paw: New Chronicles from Peru (University of Massachusetts Press). She co-edits the The Peru Reader: History, Culture, Politics (Duke University) and is an editor of Duke University Press’s World Readers series.
Kirk is a Faculty Co-Chair of the Duke Human Rights Center at the Franklin Humanities Institute and is a founding member of the Pauli Murray Project, an initiative of the center that seeks to use the legacy of this Durham daughter to examine the region’s past of slavery, segregation and continuing economic inequality. An author and human rights advocate, Kirk directs the Belfast program for DukeEngage, in partnership with Healing Through Remembering, an extensive cross-community project dealing with the legacy of past conflict and human rights. She is a lecturer in Duke's Department of Cultural Anthropology.
An essayist and award-winning poet, she has published widely on issues as diverse as the Andes, torture, the politics of memory, family life and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Mother Jones, The Washington Post, the American Scholar and Sojourners, among other publications.
Robin Kirk is a graduate of the University of Chicago and holds an MFA in Children’s and Young Adult literature from Vermont College of Fine Arts.