( Mark Perlberg's poems are deeply felt, their language c...)
Mark Perlberg's poems are deeply felt, their language concrete, alive, moving. Whether his verses are about his family, meditations on time and memory, love poems, or even ghost narratives, his concerns are broadly humane. His voice is sometimes lyric, sometimes narrative -- often in the same poem -- but always unmistakably his own. The largely autobiographical Part I opens the collection with moving poems about the poet's family -- his overeducated maternal grandfather, his mother, the dead father the boy never really knew. The tone darkens in Part II includes a powerful recollection of Perlberg's own heart surgery and brief but wrenching Holocaust poems based on a trip to Prague: "An old Jew dreams...the Grand Rabbi/ has forgotten all the secret names of God" ("Kabbala"). In Part III Perlberg offers love poems and continues his lifelong preoccupation with East Asia. Verses about childhood fill Part IV, with a memory of the spicy smell of burning, discarded Christmas trees; a touching tribute to the enduring influence of the poet's first grade teacher; and recollections of carefree summer days.
Bachelor, Hobart College, 1950. Postgraduate, Columbia University, 1952.
Contributing editor, correspondent Time Magazine, New York City, Chicago, 1955-1960. Senior editor World Book Encyclopedia Year Book, Chicago, 1961-1966. Principal editor Encyclopedia Britannica, 1967-1972.
Managing editor text Prism Magazine, American Medical Association, 1972-1976. Manager publications Rotary International, Evanston, Illinois, 1979-1991. Instructor poetry workshop Newberry Library., Chicago, from 1982.
Sergeant United States Army, 1952-1954, PTO. Member Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists and Novelists association, Poetry Society of America, Society Midland Authors (5 year judge/poetry award), Poetry Center Chicago (co-founder 1974, board directors 1974-2003, president 1980-1994, director emeritus since 2003, recipient Lannan Writer's Residency, 2002), Academy of America Poets.
Married Anna Nessy Backer, February 4, 1953. Children: Katherine Eve Friedberg, Julie Anna Farwell.