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About Richard Morris Dey


Dey graduated from Tabor Academy and, after two years at St. Lawrence University and three in the U.S. Army, from Harvard College in 1973. He has worked as a commercial fisherman in the offshore lobster and swordfish fisheries off New England. As freelance journalist, he has contributed to Yachting, Sail, Offshore, The Boston Globe, and Harvard Magazine, among other publications. Currently, he is an instructor of maritime history and literature in the SEAmester program of Southhampton College, Long Island University. The father of two boys, he lives on the south shore of Massachusetts and visits Bequia in the West Indies frequently.

The Bequia Poems principally documents the experience of a contemporary American writer and sailor in the West Indies. In a tradition that began with the American poet Philip Freneau in 1775, Dey writes as an expatriate. The focus of the poems is Bequia (pronounced Beck-way), a distinct island in the Windward Islands and dependency of St. Vincent of the Grenadines. Some of these poems document the ethnography of this island, yet many are deeply personal and speak beyond a single island's domain.

The first poems were written while Dey, having worked on a yacht in the Caribbean in the summer of 1971, was a student at Harvard and published in The Harvard Advocate. Several of the other poems have been published in magazines, among them Poetry and Sail. Poems about Bequia have become an ongoing work, and three subsequent collections have been published with small presses. Dey studied writing poetry under James Dickey, Robert Fitzgerald, and Elizabeth Bishop.

To read Frangipani Poems by Richard Dey.
To read poetry from The Bequia Poems by Richard Dey.




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