From Poe and Plath to Meds and Co-Pays: Poetry and Mental Illness

Terrace Suite I, Summit Building, Seattle Convention Center, Level 4
Saturday, March 11, 2023
9:00 am to 10:15 am


The troubled poet, their writing fueled by mental illness, is a stock figure in the public imagination. This romanticized view glosses over the difficulties of living with a mental health condition, whether it is one’s own or a family member’s. Poets who write about mental illness will discuss both craft and practical issues: Why write about this subject? How does it influence form? What are the ethics involved? What does it mean to write publicly about a topic that is taboo in your community?

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: From_Poe_and_Plath_to_Meds_and_Co-Pays__Poetry_and_Mental_Illness_Event_Outline__update.pdf



Emily Pérez is the author of the poetry collections What Flies Want, winner of the 2021 Iowa Prize, and House of Sugar, House of Stone. She coedited the anthology The Long Devotion: Poets Writing Motherhood. A CantoMundo Fellow and Ledbury Critic, she teaches high school in Denver.

Eugenia Leigh is a Korean American author of two books of poetry. Poems from her new collection, Bianca, were awarded Poetry's Bess Hokin Prize and have appeared in The Nation, Ploughshares, Waxwing, and elsewhere. A Kundiman fellow, Eugenia serves as a poetry editor at The Adroit Journal.

Kate Hanson Foster is the author of Crow Funeral (EastOver Press 2022) a collection that deals with motherhood and mental illness. Her first collection of poems, Mid Drift was a finalist for the Massachusetts Center for the Book Award. She lives and writes in Groton, Massachusetts.

Diannely Antigua is a Dominican American poet and educator, born and raised in Massachusetts. Her debut collection Ugly Music, was the winner of the Pamet River Prize and a 2020 Whiting Award. Her second collection Good Monster is forthcoming from Copper Canyon. She received her MFA from NYU.

Kayleb Rae Candrilli is the recipient of a Whiting Award and of a fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts. They are the author of Water I Won’t Touch, All the Gay Saints, and What Runs Over.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center