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Sessions & Speakers 2017

Poetry Sessions

POETRY PANEL –  Perfect Words for an Imperfect World

Meredith Hadaway, Moderator, with Le HintonAmanda Newell and Renée K. Nicholson

How can personal narrative restore some sense of order in a disintegrating world? Four poets discuss the power of poetry to bring us through times that are physically, spiritually—and yes, politically—challenging. Each will discuss how poems that bear witness to struggle—through our own stories and those of others—can inspire work that engages us all. 

Meredith Davies Hadaway is the author of three poetry collections. Her most recent, At The Narrows, won the 2015 Delmarva Book Prize for creative writing. Hadaway has received fellowships from the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, an Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council and multiple Pushcart nominations. She is a former Rose O’Neill Writer-in-Residence at Washington College, where she taught English and creative writing in addition to serving as vice president for communications and marketing. Photo Credit: Tamzin Smith

Le Hinton is the author of five poetry collections including The Language of Moisture and Light (Iris G. Press, 2014). His work has been widely published and can be found in The Best American Poetry 2014, Little Patuxent Review, The Summerset Review, the Baltimore Review, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, and outside Clipper Magazine Stadium in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, incorporated into Derek Parker's sculpture Common Thread. He is the founder and co-editor of the poetry journal Fledgling Rag.

Amanda Newell is the 2015 winner of the Patricia Dobler Poetry Award, judged by Lynn Emanuel. Recent work has appeared in Bellevue Literary Review, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, storySouth, War, Literature & the Arts, and Zone 3, among others. Her poem, “Recommendation,” which appeared in Bellevue Literary Review’s recent war-themed issue, was featured on the BLR website and selected to be performed at New York University’s Langone Medical Center as part of BLR’s “Off the Page Series.” Her chapbook of poems, Fractured Light, also won the Dogfish Head Poetry Prize. She is currently pursuing her MFA from Warren Wilson College, and she teaches English at The Gunston School.

A past Emerging Writer-in-Residence at Penn State-Altoona, and author of the poetry collection Roundabout Directions to Lincoln CenterRenée K. Nicholson is assistant professor in the Programs for Multi- and Interdisciplinary Studies at West Virginia University, where she also is part of an expressive writing program at the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Institute’s infusion center. She is a recipient of grants from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts, the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation and elsewhere, and her writing has appeared in Poets & Writers, Midwestern Gothic, Moon City Review, The Gettysburg Review and elsewhere. Her website is www.reneenicholson.com.

JAMES ALLEN HALL  – Poetic Apertures:  Condensing and Expansive Strategies for Writing Poems

“Change your form and you change your nature,” Louise Glück writes at the end of “Parable of the Dove.” It takes nerve to change a poem’s nature, and this craft session will help us think about ways of altering, focusing, and expanding a poem’s lens. We'll see what poems of wide and small scope look like, what they achieve, and how they work their magic on us—all so that we may wield this sorcery on our own readers.

James Allen Hall is the author of Now You're the Enemy (U of Arkansas, 2008), which won awards from the Lambda Literary Foundation, the Texas Institute of Letters, and the Fellowship of Southern Writers. A new book of lyric personal essays, I Liked You Better Before I Knew You So Well, won the Cleveland State University Press Essay Collection Award and has just been published. Hall's poems have appeared in New England Review, A Public Space, Boston Review, Agni, American Poetry Review, and Best American Poetry 2012. A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment of the Arts and the New York Foundation for the Arts, he teaches creative writing at Washington College in Chestertown, MD.

ERIN MURPHY  – Writing Documentary Poetry

Just as documentary photographers take to the streets to capture particular moments in time, documentary poets engage with primary sources to chronicle historical events and everyday life. In this workshop, we will discuss how to use letters, diaries, transcripts, and other materials to create persona, collage, and erasure poems. 

Erin Murphy is the author of six books of poetry, most recently Ancilla (Lamar University Press, 2014), and is co-editor of two anthologies from SUNY Press: Making Poems: Forty Poems with Commentary by the Poets and Creating Nonfiction: Twenty Essays and Interviews with the Writers. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in such journals as The Georgia Review, The Normal School, Field, Southern Humanities Review, North American Review, Women’s Studies Quarterly, and Southern Indiana Review and have been featured on Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac. Her anthology publications include 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Every Day edited by Billy Collins (Random House) and The Art of Losing edited by Kevin Young (Bloomsbury), She is Professor of English at Penn State University, Altoona College. Website: www.erin-murphy.com

MEREDITH DAVIES HADAWAY  -  Location, Location, Location:  Poetry of Place

What do we mean by “eco-poetry” and how can it help us reimagine our world? We will explore ways to go beyond “nature poetry,” tapping the generative power of a particular place to engage our creative energies, to hone our voices, and to enact our connection to everything around us.

Meredith Davies Hadaway is the author of three poetry collections. Her most recent, At The Narrows, won the 2015 Delmarva Book Prize for creative writing. Hadaway has received fellowships from the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, an Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council and multiple Pushcart nominations. She is a former Rose O’Neill Writer-in-Residence at Washington College, where she taught English and creative writing in addition to serving as vice president for communications and marketing. Photo Credit: Tamzin Smith


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