The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

The Greyhound

The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

Loyola University Maryland’s Modern Masters Reading Series begins with poetry


On Monday, Jan. 28, a sizable congregation in McManus Theatre gathered as Loyola alum Joseph Capista introduced his ex teacher, Karen Fish, the reader of the evening. Fish is well known throughout the student and administrative body of Loyola as the chair of the Writing Department at Loyola University Maryland and a professor of several writing courses.

Fish received her degree from Arcadia University in Photography and Painting. She then received her MA from the rigorous writing seminars of Johns Hopkins University. To date, Fish has written two books of poems, “What is Beyond Us”and “The Cedar Canoe.”

The event was organized to showcase Fish’s collective works, which encompassed a select variety of poems that characterized different stages of her career as well as the spectacles she has observed around herself throughout the years.

This event is the first in the Modern Masters Reading Series, an event hosted by Loyola to provide an exemplary listening experience of hearing the voices of modern writers in a group setting. Through exposure to the texts in the voices of the authors, those present are able to hear the narrative works in a new light and derive meaningful truths beyond a silent reading.

As Fish stepped onto the lighted stage, she enraptured the audience with her use of uncommon prose and exceptional control of language. The character she gave to her poems through her soft voice carried across the air of the theater and forced the audience to confront complex themes such as the relativity of space and memories.

In the poem entitled “Black Ice,” Fish illustrates the power of sensory words and how they hold the ability to create a clear picture without the listener ever having been to the place being described. For example, one particular line of the poem adheres to our sense of distance. The line, which Fish read with enthusiasm, said, “The trees along the edge of the lake rise up like chimneys of smoke.”

Fish went on to read a selection of other poems that display the intricacies of a life well lived. Fish opened up to the audience about the complexities of her life as each line fell through the silent air. The crowd was simply fully engaged with her moment by moment.

“A lot of the imagery she used made me think about the space between things a lot more than I usually do,” said Grace Homany ’21, reflecting on the different literary techniques embedded in Fish’s poems. Furthermore, she really enjoyed the event because it provided an opportunity to “see the work [her] professors did in the professional sphere.”

For more information and future Modern Master’s Reading Series presenters, please visit



Feature Image: Courtesy of Jenna Granato.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Greyhound Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Activate Search
Loyola University Maryland’s Modern Masters Reading Series begins with poetry