Welty Week

Every October, the week I look forward to most is this one. Each year Mississippi University for Women brings a dozen writers to campus to read from their fiction, poetry, and essays at the Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium. It’s an intense three days (and intense preparation beforehand). Everything is lining up fairly well. So far,Continue reading “Welty Week”

Support Your Local Arts

As I prepared a selection of poems to submit to the Mississippi Arts Commission for a fellowship application, I was reminded just how important state and local arts organizations can be. I think of all the cultural experiences that would go without funding if local and state arts organizations (and the NEA) didn’t exist, andContinue reading “Support Your Local Arts”

Local Culture

This weekend, we took in a little of the local culture and had a lot of fun. Friday night, thanks to organizers Chris Hannon and Adele Eliot, there was an open mic night at Cafe Aromas in downtown Columbus MS. I took a few poems to read, and Aidan brought his fiddle. Since there weren’tContinue reading “Local Culture”

Some Thoughts on Rhyme

Though it is still the holiday season and most of my recent posts have been about food, I’ve been thinking about poetry and teaching, especially as we drive across country, listening to music. As we prepare to ring in the new year, I’ve been thinking about rhyme in song lyrics and in poetry. As aContinue reading “Some Thoughts on Rhyme”

Merry Christmas

As a Christmas present to the blogosphere, I’m posting a poem from my second book, Time Capsules. It was originally composed on a bitter cold Christmas Eve in 1996, when I was visiting my parents. Lilith, the black lab/border collie mix, who is mentioned in the poem, died several years ago. She was a constantContinue reading “Merry Christmas”

Wall Poems

Leave it to the Dutch to create neat graffiti. In Leiden, they have printed poems on walls in beautiful fonts, like this poem by Paul Snoek, “Een zwemmer is een ruiter,” which appears on the wall of the public pool, De Zijl. It has apparently been there since 2003. Now there is a website thatContinue reading “Wall Poems”

International Writing in the South

In my day job, I teach World Literature, among other things, so I was excited this year to direct the Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium and include a number of international writers. The Symposium normally focuses on Southern writers, so I tried to find writers who had been living and writing in the South for quiteContinue reading “International Writing in the South”

Welty Symposium 2011 Begins

One of my favorite parts of my day job is directing the Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium. Each year we bring a dozen authors to campus, and tonight I had dinner with our first to arrive, Joy Castro, author of The Truth Book. We had a delightful conversation, and in typical Columbus style, ran into newspaperContinue reading “Welty Symposium 2011 Begins”