Peake to read at UVa-Wise Sept. 10

Professor Richard H. Peake, award-winning poet, novelist, and naturalist, will present a reading of his fiction and poetry highlighting one of his latest novels, “Love and Death on Safari”, at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise on Monday, Sept. 10, at 7 p.m.  in the Slemp Student Center’s Rhododendron Room.

Peake has published three novels in addition to “Love and Death on Safari”: 2003’s academic satire “Jack, Be Nimble”; 2008’s “Moon’s Black Gold” (originally titled “The Little Dog Laughed”); and its 2018 sequel “Beauty’s No Biscuit “.

Peake has published collections of poetry including “Wings Across”, “Poems for Terence”, “Birds and Other Beasts” and “Earth and Stars”.  Recent poems have appeared in such publications as “Avocet”, “Harbinger Asylum”, “Jimson Weed”, “Boundless”, and “The Anglican Theological Review”.


While an undergraduate student at the University of Virginia, Peake won the Mary Cummings Eudy Poetry Award and later became poetry editor of The University of Virginia Magazine. Peake published early poems in Impetus, alongside John Ciardi, and in the Georgia Review.

Peake is also the author of 1990’s “From Papaw to Print: a History of Appalachian Literature”.  A graduate of the University of Virginia and the University of Georgia, Peake taught English language and literature at Clemson University, Western Carolina University, and the University of Georgia, before coming to Wise.  Along with Professor Jack Mahony, he began the College’s annual Medieval-Renaissance Conference in 1986.  Peake will present a paper at this year’s conference, which runs Sept. 13-15.

Peake served on the English faculty at UVa-Wise (then Clinch Valley College of the University of Virginia) from 1968-1997, where he taught Shakespeare, Renaissance literature, and Appalachian literature for thirty years. He also served as chair of the Department of Language and Literature and for a year as Acting Dean of the College.

A lifelong naturalist, Peake has served as President of the Virginia Society of Ornithology and has been active in ornithological activities throughout the southern United States and beyond. In 2001 he published “Birds of the Virginia Cumberlands”, an annotated list and discussion of the birds of Wise, Dickinson, Lee, and parts of Russell County Virginia (available from the author).  Peake is a lifetime member of many environmental organizations as well as the Poetry Society of Virginia and the Poetry Society of Texas.

Copies of his recent books will be available for book signing after the event.

This is a cultural credit activity.

For more information, please contact College Relations at (276) 376-1027.

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