|Eloise Klein Healy|
"I could go on about the choices I've made," Eloise Klein Healy writes in her 1991 poetry collection, Artemis in Echo Park, "and all the other elements of my landscape / emotionally carved out or artfully decorated, / but the real truth is, here you can see / the ribs showing through." Healy, who was recently named Los Angeles' first poet laureate by outgoing mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, has made the kind of choices that define a career, although perhaps that has become clear only in retrospect — as is often the case with the choices that define us.
Now 69, Healy has had a long and successful academic career, directing the women's studies program at Cal State Northridge, founding the MFA program in creative writing at Antioch University Los Angeles, where she is now a professor emeritus, and founding Arktoi Books, a Red Hen Press imprint that specializes in the work of lesbian authors. She's written seven books of poetry, the most recent of which, A Wild Surmise, was published in March. And then there's the poet laureate honor, which Healy says took her by complete surprise, "because I didn't think they'd choose a white lesbian."More »