Poem of the Week: Point Park Literary Arts Instructor's Work Recognized by City of Asylum Friday, July 10, 2020
The work of Fred Shaw, M.F.A., a published poet and part-time instructor for the Point Park University Department of Literary Arts and Social Justice, was selected as the "Poem of the Week" by City of Asylum, a Pittsburgh-based organization that provides a thriving community for writers, readers and neighbors.
Shaw's selected poem, "Penny Bombing" was published in Sampsonia Way, an online magazine for literature, free speech and social justice.
"'Penny Bombing' was inspired by a text my old friend Len Bogats shared with me as we were reminiscing over our adolescence after losing touch for 30 years," Shaw explained.
Shaw was named an Emerging Poet Laureate 2020 Finalist for Allegheny County. His first collection, Scraping Away, was recently published by CavanKerry Press. A book reviewer and poetry editor for Pittsburgh Quarterly, Shaw's poem, “Argot,” is featured in the 2018 full-length documentary, Eating & Working & Eating & Working. The film focuses on the lives of local service-industry workers. Also, his poem “Scraping Away” was selected for the PA Public Poetry Project in 2017.
In April 2020, Shaw was featured in Literary Hub for his article: "Poet Fred Shaw on Missing the Work of a New Orleans Restaurant: Reflections on a Life in Restaurants as the Coronavirus Shuts Them All Down."
Most recently, Shaw was awarded a commission to write a poem for the Bridging the Gap: Public Art Project through the Westmoreland County Museum of American Art. He will be writing a site specific poem for the bridge leading to the museum, working with the artist Janet Zweig, who will be posting his words, verse by verse, across the bridge over the span of a year.
This fall, Shaw will be teaching the following classes at Point Park: Introduction to Composition, The Art of Poetry and Poetry Workshop I.
For more about Shaw, read the following articles:
- "Carlynton alum, Ross resident publishes first collection; poems focus on work in food service industry," Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
- "Fred Shaw's 'Scraping Away' is a sharply serrated book of poems," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
- "Paola Corso Interviews Fred Shaw," CavanKerry Press