Star Coulbrooke

Star Coulbrooke is the inaugural poet laureate of Logan City, Utah. She was born in Preston, Idaho on February 22, 1951, to a farm family with acreage along the Bear River. She quit high school to marry a Logan boy, completed her GED in 1986, and enrolled at Utah State University where she earned a BA in Literary Studies (1996) and an MA in American Studies/Folklore (1998). She has lived in Smithfield for twenty-eight years.

Coulbrooke wrote her bachelors’ and master’s theses in poetry. She is the author of several chapbooks, notably Walking the Bear (Outlaw Artists Press, 2011) and three poetry collections, including Thin Spines of Memory (2017, Both Sides from the Middle (2018), and City of Poetry (2019), all from Helicon West Press. She is editor of the Helicon West Anthology: A Ten-Year Celebration of Featured Readers (2016), which won the League of Utah Writers Gold Quill Award.

During her laureateship (April 2015-August 2019), Coulbrooke organized 142 events throughout Logan, Cache Valley, and northern Utah. Her main project was to create a series of collaborative community poems, which she presented to the mayor and council members each year of her term. Contributors to the poems joined her on poetry walkabouts, in which they read poems on a theme, wrote from a prompt, and sent their lines to Coulbrooke for selection and inclusion in the final poem.

Coulbrooke also created poems for special events, such as “Sesquicentennial, City of Poetry.” She composed and presented a tribute poem, “Of Balance and Grace: The Public Face of Leadership,” for the inaugural celebration of Noelle Cockett, Utah State University’s first female president. These poems, along with others she composed for individuals and organizations, including the community collaborative poems, can be found in City of Poetry.

As co-founder and organizer of the Helicon West Featured Readers/Open Readings Series (2005), Coulbrooke coordinates twice-monthly events and oversees publication of the Helicon West Community Broadsides. Helicon West is an official partner of the Logan Library and winner of the 2013 Utah State University Robins Award Achievement of the Year.

In addition to her work with Helicon West, Coulbrooke has served as literary grants panelist for the Utah Arts Council, committee member for the selection of the first three Utah poets laureate, and judge for various contests and publications. She teaches workshops for organizations such as the League of Utah Writers, the Utah State Poetry Society, and the National Federation of the Blind, and gives dozens of public lectures and poetry readings throughout the West. She is director of the Utah State University Writing Center and a long-time activist for rivers, public lands, wildlife, domestic animals, and humans.

Works

Bibliography

  • City of Poetry, Helicon West Press, Logan, Utah, 2019
  • Both Sides from the Middle, Helicon West Press, Logan, Utah, 2018
  • Thin Spines of Memory, Helicon West Press, Logan, Utah, 2017
  • The Helicon West Anthology: A Ten-Year Celebration of Featured Readers, Editor, Helicon West Press, Logan, Utah, 2016  
  • Walking the Bear, Outlaw Artists Press, Price, Utah, 2011
  • Logan Canyon Blend, co-authored with Kenneth W. Brewer, Blue Scarab Press, Pocatello, Idaho, 2003   

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