Joseph Duemer

Obituary of Joseph Duemer

Joseph Duemer, professor emeritus, 66, of South Colton, died Tuesday, June 27, 2017, at his home while under the care of his wife Carole Mathey and Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley.

Joseph was born May 31, 1951, in San Diego, California, the son of the late Louis and Evelyn (Tuttle) Duemer.  He was a graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and later earned the Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop.

Prof. Duemer began his career at San Diego State University as an adjunct instructor in the English department and joined the Clarkson faculty as an assistant professor in 1988, giving 28 years of exemplary service to the University.  He was granted tenure and promoted to associate professor in 1994, and promoted to full professor in 2001, shortly after completing a year as a Fulbright Senior Research Fellow in Hanoi, Vietnam.

His scholarly and creative interests included contemporary American poetry, translation of Vietnamese poetry, and emerging online literary genres. He taught courses in creative writing, literature, popular music and Buddhism.  Duemer received the 2011 Poetry Award from American Literary Review for his poem “Lake Surface Full of Clouds,” which appeared in its spring 2012 edition.

He published numerous books of poetry, including The Light of Common Day, Customs, Static, and Magical Thinking, and co-edited Dog Music: Poetry About Dogs. His poems and criticism appeared in more than 75 literary journals, including New England Review, Antioch Review, American Poetry Review, Quarterly West, The Journal, Iowa Review, Georgia Review, Southern Poetry Review, and Tampa Review. He is also the former poetry editor of The Wallace Stevens Journal.

Duemer participated in numerous academic conferences in the United States and Vietnam, most recently in 2015. He remained an active scholar throughout his Clarkson career, holding fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities for writing and research. He served on numerous departmental and University committees, including two terms as chair of the faculty senate. Duemer was a regular blogger on topics of general and intellectual interest, and had recently taken up cartooning.

Duemer was an active member of the Zen Mountain Monastery in Mount Tremper, NY.

He is survived by his wife Carole Mathey and four dogs, Dash, Oliver, Candy and Buckle, all of South Colton.

Memorial services and inurnment are being planned at the Zen Mountain Monastery in Mt. Tremper, NY.

Lawrence Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 21 Park Street, Canton has been entrusted to Joseph’s care. Memorial contributions are suggested to Zen Mountain Monastery or to Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley.