Tag Archives: Poetry

Place and its Effect on the Poets’ Craft

By Maria James-Thiawauvillar-performance

I am a cliché.

I admit it. The hours upon hours I would sit in cushy café chairs staring at Van Gogh prints or absorbing bebop, acoustic guitar or neo-soul over the sound of espresso beans in the grinder makes me that writer – the one feverishly finishing a manuscript in the corner of the neighborhood coffeehouse, imagining themselves the next JK Rowling.

It’s been done. The evenings wasted away talking with hipsters about all that’s hip, or snapping fingers to a favorite local wordsmith’s latest poetic rant are the moments I live for. They are a major source of inspiration, and yet, while hot mochas are indeed my muse, I still find that being a regular at the local coffee spot can get old after a while. The time comes when a poet needs to find inspiration elsewhere.

For me, that elsewhere has been France, where I took a VCCA poetry workshop in a beautiful and ancient town where you could touch, taste, and feel history everywhere.  The place was poetry, from every curved cobblestone to the floating cottonwood, the thick-hipped maternal sculptures, and the mix of smells emerging from the soap maker’s shop.  In 2015, after my second trip,  I wrote that place – its scent, its people, its food, and its influence on me, a mere visitor.

The experience moved me to ask other writers, contemporary American authors well known for their work, “In what ways does travel impact your writing?”

Here is what they said:

“I use traveling as a kind of self-exile. I’m never able to fully write about the place I live until I am away from it, trmarilyn-nelsonaveling to a place that’s new and unknown. Only then, with distance and even that little ache of homesickness in the heart, does a kind a clarity come to me. Only then do I permit myself the freedom to see what I could not see about my home/community/family, etc when I was in it. . .just one of the ways that traveling impacts my writing.” ~ Marilyn Nelson, award winning poet, translator and children’s book author.

carla-christopher-photo-credit-kate-penn-york-daily-record“Familiarity breeds apathy. Even something as simple as watching a couple walk down the street or having a cup of coffee watching the rain fall becomes a new experience when my surroundings change. Travel keeps me alive to the tiny miracles and the epic beauty of even small and simple things.” Carla Christopher, author, publisher and community activist; Former Poet Laureate of York, PA.

“I do not write overtly about the places I physically visit. And I rarely write about the places where I live. But I do know that when I am actually moving through space on a tetherless voyage, writing moves with me and in me and is touched of course by the whole of those places.” ~ Lucy Anderton, published author and spoken word artist living in France.

 “When I write on the road, I rarely write about my location. Most of my book YOU DON’T MISS YOUR WATER was written on the road, CA, Mexico and Italy, but the poems are grounded in my hometown of Rochester, NY, which is never mentioned.” ~ Cornelius Eady, prize winning poet, co-founder of Cave Canem Foundation.

marilynkallet“Travel is movement, and poetry is all about movement. I take dictation from the road, from the Garonne and the gulls. I listen for every new sound and transcribe new tastes. Travel is often lonely. My poetry is an ally and a friend, constant and porous. I’m in Paris now, alone with my notebook. It’s a consolation. My book, The Love That Moves Me, is all about being on the road, in the air.” ~ Marilyn Kallet, award winning poet, Director of Creative Writing at University of TN-Knoxville.

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2016 Poetry Contest!

Poetry Contest 2016The Central Pen Literary E-zine and The Academy of American Poets is proud to present the 2016 Poetry Contest!  All current Central Penn College students are invited to participate.  The first place winner will receive a $100 prize, a one-year subscription to the Academy of American Poets, and publication in the e-zine.  Second place will receive $50 and publication in the e-zine.  Third place will receive $25 and publication in the e-zine.  Submit to TheCentralPen@centralpenn.edu before April 29, 2016 to be considered!

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by | March 30, 2016 · 1:14 pm

A Celebration of Sisterhood: Knight Writers host Poetry-filled Jewelry Party to End Human Trafficking

March is Women’s History Month, and so the Knight Writers feel there is no better time to focus on an issue that has been affecting women for generations–violence against women and its ugly cousin, human trafficking. human trafficking
 
On Thursday, March 3rd from 4:00 – 6:00 PM in room 203 of the ATEC building, we will be hosting “Literary Libation, a fundraiser for Women at Risk International (W.A.R.).”  This event is free and open to the public.
Participants can share their own poetry or songs and enjoy the powerful spoken word performance of featured poet, Kali Meister of Chatanooga, TN.
 
In addition, W.A.R. International will be selling a beautiful array of handmade jewelry and other items to fund efforts to save women trapped in the clutches of modern-day slavery. Help Us end these atrocious crimes against humanity! Join the Knight Writers on Thursday, March 3rd at 4pm in ATEC 203.
 
For more information please visit http://warinternational.org/news-media/video-gallery/ .

Knight Writers present: Literary Libation; A fundraiser to help end human trafficking!

Knight Writers present: Literary Libation; A fundraiser to help end human trafficking!


 

 

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The Professional Writer: Bridging the Gap between Page and Stage with Carla Christopher

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Central Pennsylvania’s arts scene is alive and thriving because it is held up by pillars like professional writer, Carla Christopher, York city’s Arts & Culture Liaison and host of Culture & Main. Carla is no stranger to Central Penn College. When she was Poet Laureate of York, PA she performed here in celebration of “Poem in Your Pocket Day, 2013.” Her small press, Poem Sugar, has published the works of some of our faculty and staff and she even gave our Corporate Communications students a taste of real world broadcasting by inviting them to a taping of her TV Show, Culture and Main. One of those students, Amanda Kloehr, read her poetry on the show.

This artistic entrepreneur is the glue that keeps Central PA’s cultural scene together. That is no easy task, especially when there are conflicts even within specific artistic genres. Take poetry for example, where traditional “page” poets and stage performers fight for domination, each one seeing their style as the only right way to do poetry. Regardless of this ongoing debate, Carla Christopher is a bridge between the two.

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It’s Time to SLAM

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Who: The Knight Writers and The Central Pen E-Zine

When: September 3rd @ 7pm

Where: The Capital Blue Cross Theatre

WHY: 

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Apparition by Dezmyn Edmond

I haven’t talked to or seen my dad in years

Is that weird? A ghost of my past that brings me tears?

One of my greatest fears is crying in front of people,

But who’s going to hear me when I’m a spirit, is that believable?

The life of a ghost, I got it genetically from my dad

If I told my mom that, she’d say “it’s just a fad”

She’s a nonbeliever, she doesn’t believe in ghosts

Not believing me or my dad, what a host

Can you be an apparition, but still be afraid of them?

Why am I not normal like the rest of them?

Ghosts scare people, but I’m alienated

I feel the hatred. Not because I’m a ghost, but because I’m a friendly one

Now isn’t that fun? I’m weightless but I feel like I weigh a ton

Like an automaton, an android, a robot

Feel like the world relies on me to save it, like an Autobot

I can now see through my eyelids, so I don’t sleep a wink

Surprised with the lack of sleep that I’m not a psychofink

Why bother try to sleep? It’s irrelevant to me now

I forgot the ability to sleep, so I don’t know how

If you were in my shoes would you feel the same way?

Probably not since I’m a ghost so I don’t wear them anyway

I’m just a shadowy figure lingering in the dark

Trying to make people see me to make my mark

People perform séances just to talk to me

And they always think my services are for free

Because I’m a friendly ghost, but I’m not Casper,

But I’m never happy so I’m not gay, like Family Guy’s Jasper

I can say whatever I want because who listens to what I say?

People noticing I exist? That’ll be the day

I’ll disappear forever into the shadows where I belong

Consumed by hatred and darkness, I knew it all along.


Amani_ZDezmyn Edmond is an accounting major from Toms River, NJ who enjoys writing and performing.  He is an active member of the Knight Writers Creative Writing Club and gave a moving reading of their prize winning poems at the Knight Writer’s “Take a Stand” event in June..

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# Rep your city

My city is known as the city of brotherly love

Yet we watch anxiously

As our brothers put guns to innocent temples and pull the trigger

Releasing their rights to freedom

 

Let us not forget the whips that were cracked against our brother’s bare black skin

The flesh that has been torn open at the expense

Of us

The generation that would save us all

Because after all we are the future.

 

But yet we are a disgrace in the eyes of our ancestors.

Can you picture it?

Emmett till spitting out our names in shame

Harriet Tubman turning her face disowning us.

Martin Luther king pulling the “I have a dream speech” from underneath our muddy undeserving feet.

Can you see it?

We are being stripped of our culture the more we embrace this city that’s not of brotherly love

But a city filled with brothers that embrace self hate.


Philadelphia native, Ayana Addison has been writing poetry for years and studied under JusGreg (aka Greg Corbin,) the award-winning spoken word artist and teacher from HBO’s Brave New Voices.  She is an active member of the Knight Writers Creative Writing Club.  “#Rep your city” won second prize in Central Penn College’s 6th Annual Poetry Contest in 2015 sponsored by the Academy of American Poets.

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Reception of Conception by Roman Alcazar

Spontaneous, Unique.

Original, Mystique.

Subject to society’s unforgiving critique.

 

Realistic, Attainable.

Pragmatic, Sustainable.

Though antagonists may find it quite debatable.

 

Focused, Detailed.

Scrupulous, Unveiled.

Opponents may cite previous attempts that failed.

 

A golden idea,

A universal panacea,

Many exist in a forgotten galleria.


Roman AlcazRoman_first placear is a Corporate Communications major with a background in radio. He’s also a proud dad-to-be.  “Reception of Conception” won first prize in Central Penn College’s 6th Annual Poetry Contest in 2015 sponsored by the Academy of American Poets.

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Introducing the 2015 Central Pen Poetry Prize Winners!

WaltPoetryContestFlierThis spring The Central Pen Literary E-zine hosted its 6th Annual Poetry Competition. This annual writing contest is sponsored by The Academy of American Poets, a national organization whose chancellor is Juan Felipe Herrera, the Poet Laureate of the United States. The first place winner received $100.00 and a year’s membership into the Academy.

The winners were:
1st Place: Roman Alcazar for Reception of Conception
2nd Place: Ayana Addisonfor Rep My City
3rd Place: Dezmyn Edmond for Apparition

First place winner Roman Alcazar is a Corporate Communications major with a background in radio. He’s also a proud dad-to-be. Philadelphia native, Ayana Addison has been writing poetry for years and studied under JusGreg (aka Greg Corbin,) the award-winning spoken word artist and teacher from HBO’s Brave New Voices. Dezmyn Edmond is an accounting major from Toms River, NJ who enjoys writing and performing.  Both Ayana and Dezmyn are active members of the Knight Writers Creative Writing Club.  Roman and Dezmyn gave moving readings of their prize winning poems at the Knight Writer’s “Take a Stand” event in June.  The contest is coordinated by Professor Maria Thiaw and the judges are literary enthusiasts and poets from the Central Penn College and community.

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Knight Writers “Take a Stand” with spoken word phenom, Ladi Glori!

Knight Writers flier w tree - APPROVED

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