Carnegie Mellon University
April 03, 2013

English Department's Yona Harvey Publishes New Book Entitled "Hemming the Water"

English Department's Yona Harvey Publishes New Book Entitled

Channeling the collection's muse, jazz composer and pianist Mary Lou Williams, “Hemming the Water” speaks to the futility of trying to mend or straighten a life that is constantly changing. Here the spiritual and the secular comingle in a "Fierce fragmentation, lonely tune." Carnegie Mellon University’s Yona Harvey inhabits, challenges, and explores the many facets of the female self--as daughter, mother, sister, wife, and artist. Every page is rich with Harvey's rapturous music.

Harvey, an Assistant Teaching Professor of English within the Deitrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, is a literary artist living in Pittsburgh, and the recipient of a 2012 Individual Artist Grant from The Pittsburgh Foundation

Toi Derricotte, 2012 PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry winner and professor of writing at the University of Pittsburgh said of “Hemming the Water” that"there is no rest in this extraordinary debut book by Yona Harvey. It is a book in which the devastation is still very much alive."

Carol Muske-Dukes, former Poet Laureate of California and professor of English at the University of Southern California calls “Hemming the Water” “something unheard of—never quite ‘seen’ before,” adding that “it is original . . . we are spun into lyrical music, stunning ‘inscapes’ of language.”

To learn more about “Hemming the Water,” which was published by Four Way Books, the University Press of New England, visit