Friends of Merrymeeting Bay’s first presentation of their 23nd annual Winter Speaker Series: E.A. Robinson, Gardiner’s Pulitzer Poet features author and former legislator Gay Grant. This event takes place in the Morrill Meeting Room of Curtis Memorial Library in Brunswick on Wednesday Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. 

Born in Head Tide, Alna, Robinson’s childhood and youth were spent in Gardiner. Gardiner author Gay Grant will discuss how this industrial age town along the Kennebec River shaped the development of Robinson, a three-time Pulitzer Prize winner for poetry and four-time Nobel literature nominee. 

Robinson, one of the most prolific American poets during the 20th century, published 28 books of poetry in his lifetime. He remains best known for his Tilbury Town poems. The first mention of Tilbury Town — a mythical place that Robinson reluctantly conceded might have represented Gardiner “in a shadowy way” — appears in John Evereldown published in “The Torrent & The Night Before.” 

 In 1922, Robinson received his first Pulitzer Prize, followed by two more in 1925 and 1928. Theodore Roosevelt complimented one of E.A.’s poems with this: “I am not sure I understand ‘Luke Havergal’ but I am entirely sure that I like it.”   

Grant is the author of ““long the Kennebec: The Herman Bryant Collection and Destination Unknown: An Evacuee’s Story.” She owns The Write Way writing consulting service and served in the Maine House of Representatives from 2012-2018. Gay has more than 25 years writing, editing, and grant writing experience. Her grant writing skills have secured millions of dollars in funding for Maine non- profits. She has also provided professional copy writing for business publications and editing for writers and publishers. Grant is also a consultant coach for the MELMAC Education Foundation in Augusta, Maine, providing technical assistance to six Maine technical high schools implementing grant projects funded by the foundation. 

Friends of Merrymeeting Bay hosts their Winter Speaker Series October-May, the second Wednesday of each month. The November 13th presentation, “Bugs” of the Bay features USM Assistant Professor of Stream Ecology Dr. Hamish Greig. 

Speaker Series presentations are free, open to the public and supported by Patagonia, Inc. in Freeport. Visit fomb.org for more information.