Pop-Up Poetry Spring Festival
April 14-15
Patricia Smith
Keynote Reading and the Spencer Poetry Awards

Celebrating National Poetry Month, we embrace Renaissance! Our gathering is infused by hope, cast in appreciation for the possibilities inherent in the rigors of creating, the craft of revising, the challenge of teaching, the rewards of learning, and the joy of performing and publishing poetry for both new and established poets.  We hope you join our two-day event in April with Patricia Smith as Keynote Speaker (bio), the Spencer Undergraduate Poetry Awards ceremony, outdoor readings, and much more on the beautiful West Chester University campus.


Schedule of Events:

Sunday, April 14th
Grades 3-12 Poetry Contest Award Ceremony - 2pm - SECC Room 108

Monday, April 15th
Pop-Up Poetry Day!

Join WCU Students and Faculty on the Academic Quad beginning at 10:00am to visit activity tables and impromptu pop-up poetry readings on the stage. All are welcome to join the fun!
Poetry Reading with Patricia Smith
10:00am Sykes Student Union Theatre
Master Class with Ernest Hilbert
“All is Silver”: Poetry and the Evocation of Place

“All is silver: the heavy surface of the sea, / swelling slowly as if considering spilling over.” When Elizabeth Bishop described a gray winter seaside in these terms, she immediately transported her readers to the place where the speaker of her poem stood and looked out on the scene. What techniques allow a poet to evoke a particular place persuasively and memorably? It may be a city, a Erniehouse, a room, a tower, a tomb. It may be in a distant future or recalled from the past, a place one inhabits daily or one that is fantastically far away. It can be as small as a desk or a dinner table, as vast as a landscape or a planet seen from space. The possibilities are as intriguing as they are vast. In this workshop we will explore the ways in which a poet can conjure the sensation of being in a place that may be beautiful, unsettling, terrifying, ugly, calming; a place summoned from memory or cast purely from imagination. We will work on poems that capture places and build scenes. The visual cues may be strongly symbolic or merely exist in their own rights, but the place may seem real. Following a short introductory lecture by the workshop leader, you will use discussion and a series of prompts to work on your own poem, which you may share with others during the session, if you like. You will come away from the workshop with new skills and new ways of thinking, as well as a poem to continue working on. No previous experience is necessary. Email Dr. Cherise Pollard for more information.

Spencer Undergraduate Poetry Awards and the Donald Justice Poetry Prize followed by Keynote Speaker, Patrica Smith
4:00pm - SECC Room 108



Back to top of page.