Born and raised in Steubenville, Ohio, and later living alone in a trailer during the summers in rural Monroe County, Ohio, Richard Hague has experienced two distinct settings of Appalachian life--polluted mill town and isolated country ridge. The works in his latest book, Learning How: Stories, Yarns & Tales, arise from the cultural, economic, and political constructs he encountered there.
Mr. Hague’s latest poetry book is Public Hearings: poems social, satirical, and political. In some of his previous books he has written about physics, cosmology, and the development of the atomic bomb (The Time It Takes Light), urban gardening (Garden), the town/country split of his Appalachian upbringing (Ripening, Mill, and Smoke Marrow), Appalachian landscape and culture (Possible Debris), creativity (Burst: Poems Quickly and Lives of the Poem: Community & Connection in a Writing Life), the presence of the past on the Ohio River (A Week of Nights Down River), and growing up, physically and culturally, in two places: (Milltown Natural: Essays and Stories from a Life).
His latest poetry manuscript is During the Recent Extinctions, which deals with the effects of human culture on the earth’s flora and fauna, as well as on the spirit of humans themselves. He teaches young people at Purcell Marian High School in Cincinnati—where he has worked continuously since 1969, leads adult creativity and criticism workshops, and occasionally teaches courses in intertextual reading and in teaching poetry writing at The Institute for Professional Development and Graduate School of Education at Northeastern University in Boston.
Mr. Hague is the winner of the Black Swamp Poetry Prize, the l982 Post-Corbett Award in Literary Arts in Cincinnati, two President’s Awards from The Ohio State University, three Individual Artist Fellowships in two genres from the Ohio Arts Council, the James Still Award in Short Fiction, the 2004 Poetry Book of the Year Award from the Appalachian Writers Association for Alive in Hard Country, and was named Ohio Co-Poet of the Year in 1985 for Ripening by the Ohio Poetry Day Association.
He lives in Cincinnati with his wife, professor and potter Pam Korte. They have two grown sons, Patrick and Brendan.