The Poetry Break
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The Poetry Break: Mitchell L. H. Douglas
Mitchell L. H. Douglas is an Associate Professor of English, and the director of the creative writing program at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). He is also a founding member of the Affrilachian Poets , a Cave Canem fellow, and Poetry Editor for PLUCK!: the Journal of Affrilachian Arts & Culture . Douglas was recently a featured poet as part of the ongoing Wheeling Poetry Series where he read from his second poetry collection \blak\ \al-fə bet\, published by...
The Poetry Break: William Bronk
West Virginia's poet laureate Marc Harshman highlights here work of the late William Bronk. Bronk won the National Book Award for poetry in 1981 long before his death in 1999. Do not look to Bronk for metaphor or imagery, but instead - masterful use of syntax to evoke nuances of life. Harshman pulls some of the spare poetry of the New York native William Bronk in this month's Poetry Break.
The Poetry Break: Steve Scafidi
As a young man Steve Scafidi hungered "for something like magnificence." Or so he explained when asked by Marc Harshman how he came to writing poetry. "I found it reading aloud some Walt Whitman one evening and I never quit," Scafidi said in conversation with Harshman. "I remember thinking to myself, 'my life is changing here but don't make a big deal out of this -- just follow the thread of it.' And I did." Scafidi is a cabinet maker in the Eastern Panhandle. He encourages aspiring...
The Poetry Break: Nikki Giovanni
She was born in Knoxville and raised in Cincinnati. The poems of Nikki Giovanni reflect her pride as both a black American woman, and an author with deep roots in Appalachia. She is revered not only for her poetry but for her work as essayist, children’s author, activist, and teacher. The recipient of 7 NAACP Image Awards, the Langston Hughes medal, a Grammy nominee, National Book Award finalist – her achievements are unique and impressive.
The Poetry Break: Jayne Anne Phillips
Jayne Anne Phillips is one of the finest novelists living in America today. Her many books have garnered honors that include being a finalist for the National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award, short listed for the prestigious Orange Prize, one of the Best Books of the Year by Publishers Weekly, a New York Times Best Seller and many, many others.
The Poetry Break: Jeff Mann
Raised in Covington, Virginia, and Hinton West Virginia, Jeff Mann is an author of novels, essays, short fiction, a memoir, and poems. A significant portion of his work examines the LGBTQ experience, especially as witnessed in Appalachia. He’s won many awards for his work including a Rainbow Award for Purgatory: A Novel of the Civil War , as well as the John Preston Short Fiction Award and many others. Mann is currently associate professor in creative writing at Virginia Tech.
The Poetry Break: Maggie Anderson
This month's Poetry Break features the work of Maggie Anderson. "Maggie Anderson is that rare gift [to all writers] in that she is held in equal esteem as not only a superlative poet but a superlative teacher," said March Harshman. "Professor Emerita and past Director of the Wick Poetry Program at Kent State University, she is the author of many highly acclaimed volumes of poetry."
The Poetry Break: Louise McNeill
West Virginia Poet Laureate Marc Harshman delivers the poetry of his predecessor's predecessor in this Poetry Break, Louise McNeill . "I know I'm in the presence of a truly superior poet when I go back and rediscover poems and realize how amazingly timely they still are," said host and curator Marc Harshman.
The Poetry Break: Irene McKinney
West Virginia Poet Laureate Marc Harshman delivers the poetry of his predecessor in this Poetry Break. Irene McKinney was a remarkable woman, greatly admired as a poet and teacher, " Harshman said. "She was the kind of poet who could accomplish in a few seconds that deep trust with her readers that compel them to follow her words."
The Poetry Break: Marc Harshman
A new podcast from West Virginia Public Broadcasting features poets from Appalachia and around the world. The Poetry Break is hosted and curated by West Virginia Poet Laureate Marc Harshman. Harshman delivers poems and commentary, and the first episode features some of his own work from Green-Silver and Silent , and published by Bottom Dog Press (2012), and the forthcoming Believe What You Can to be published by Vandalia Press of West Virginia University in 2016.