Mark Watney

Mark Watney’s first poem was published in a 1976 anthology of the best high school poetry in South Africa. Four decades later he published his 2nd poem– at the age of 56. And now, at age 60, he says he may have hit his stride. “My brain is slowing down,” he admits,  “yet seems to have finally acquired a certain poetic sensibility–perhaps as a consolation in old age. Or perhaps I just needed 56 years to understand what TS Eliot meant when he said that ‘Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion.’”