Irene Latham

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Irene Latham

Irene Dykes Latham (born born February 26, 1971 in Covington, Georgia) is a poet and author.

Latham briefly lived in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia with her family before they settled in Birmingham in 1984. She graduated from Hewitt-Trussville High School in 1988 and went on to earn degrees in social work at UAB and the University of Alabama.

Latham's poetry has been anthologized in several publications, and was collected in a 2007 compilation entitled What Came Before, which earned a Bronze Idependent Publishers Award and was named Book of the Year by the Alabama State Poetry Society. Her debut novel, published in 2010, is a "mid-grade" historical fiction telling the story of a young girl growing up in 1930s Gee's Bend.

Latham founded the Big Table Poets, and is the poetry editor for the Birmingham Arts Journal. Illustrator Yuko Shimizu was awarded a 2021 Caldecott medal for the children's book The Cat Man of Aleppo, which Latham co-wrote with Karim Shamsi-Basha.



  • Swagler, Susan (May 2010) "Stitching together a story." Birmingham magazine. Vol. 50, No. 5, p. 28

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