Denise Low

Denise Low  1949 –

Denise Low grew up in Emporia, Kansas.  She received bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees from the University of Kansas in English, and an MFA in creative writing from Wichita State University.  She has published ten books of poetry and essays and received awards from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Lannan Foundation, Kansas Arts Commission, Poetry Society of America, Roberts Foundation, The Newberry Library, and the Lawrence Arts Commission.

Low taught Creative Writing and American Indian Studies at Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence from 1984 to 2011.   She was an editor for Cottonwood Review at the University of Kansas for several years, and edited two volumes of poetry, 30 Kansas Poets (1979), and Confluence: Contemporary Kansas Poets (1984).  She also edited for Woodley Press, at Washburn University.  Kansas Poems of William Stafford is one of the many books she edited. Low served as the second Poet Laureate of Kansas.


A quote on illustration from Denise Low’s memoir, The Turtle’s Beating Heart:  

“Words can ignite joy. When my older sister Mary read storybook fairy tales, sometimes I would sit transfixed for hours afterward and go over the illustrations, repeating scenes.  Syllables can wind around images and create entrancing spectacles.”  (p. 121)


Click to open box.

Denise Low, Quilting. Lawrence, KS:  Holiseventh Press, 1984.  Letter press printing on hand-made paper, sheets folded in hand made box, 183 signed and numbered copies.  TFA KSC has #42.  Each poem on 7” x 21” sheet.

This box contains six poems on handmade paper.  Click on the box to open.

Words and images are copyrighted by Denise Low, and may not be used without her permission.