Check out these events in April, National Poetry Month.
by Melanie McGee Bianchi
If April is the cruelest month, as T. S. Eliot says, at least its ravages are lessened if you’re a fan of literary events. First, there’s a group reading by the Seasoned Poets of the Blue Ridge, a group of around nearly a dozen senior women writers who have met weekly for 17 years. They compose and perform somewhat under the radar, but you can catch them at retirement homes, churches, synagogues, writers’ clubs and private residences. The women write in a variety of styles, including free verse.
Seasoned spokeswoman Elda Lepak writes: “We have lived through what youth calls history; we have survived our childhoods, our careers, our parents. We tend to view the world with a balanced perspective, at times with a required sense of humor.” The poets claim 16 individually published books, plus nine anthologies. They’ll read from their latest collective effort, A Long and Winding Road, at Henderson County Public Library on April 26.
Mountain Xpress will stage its Poetry Prize extravaganza on April 8. Xpress put out an open call for poetry with a mountain theme. From hundreds of entrants, ten finalists will read their poems in Asheville’s Masonic Temple downtown. Blue Ridge Parkway Poet Laureate and Look Up, Asheville author Laura Hope-Gill will also read, and the evening will be capped by an explosive performance by Asheville Poetry Review founder and poet/rocker Keith Flynn, with his band The Holy Men. Expect refreshments and revelations.
Then, for kids, there’s a poetry event on April 2 at Spellbound Children’s Bookshop in downtown Asheville. Look for a poetry reading, activities and give-aways.
For more on the Seasoned Poets’ reading, which starts at 7 pm on April 26, email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more on the Mountain Xpress event on April 8, from 7-10 pm, go to www.mountainx.com. Details on the children’s poetry event at Spellbound: call 232-2228 or email email@example.com.