Photo by Rachel Homer
Anne Waldman is co-founder of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa, Distinguished Professor of Poetics, and director of Naropa’s Summer Writing Program—and that barely scrapes the surface of her contribution to the University. She is a celebrated poet across generations, activist, feminist, environmentalist, spiritualist, performer, teacher, and living legend. In the founding days of Naropa she was connected to the Beat movement and drew in renowned writers and poets to the University along with Allen Ginsberg, Diane diPrima, and other early faculty. She remains an active member of the Outrider experimental poetry community and continues to produce dynamic written work and lead the helm of the Naropa’s writing heritage. She’s an author of more than 60 books, and her lectures and performances have been said to be more of transmissions of truth, rather than just your anyday lecture. She has played a crucial role in shaping the institution’s identity as a center for innovative and contemplative education, and has impacted and inspired students with her bold, honest, and ever-changing style for more than five decades.