Colorado’s Poet Laureate Presents Readings and Workshops (Montrose and Telluride)

Mary Crow, Colorado’s poet laureate and English professor at Colorado State University, will present poetry readings and workshops in Montrose and Telluride May 10-12.

Crow, who was named Colorado’s poet laureate in October 1996, will present the three-day program, called "Words on the Wing II: Making Poetry Visible in Telluride." Events are tailored to reach educational professionals, school children, community libraries and arts and humanities communities.

Crow’s presentations are designed to increase the availability of poetry to local audiences, encourage the innovative teaching of poetry in schools and demonstrate how reading and writing poetry can enhance literacy.

Program events begin May 10 in Montrose with a poetry writing workshop for students from 1-2 p.m. and for teachers from 2-2:30 p.m. Both workshops are at Montrose Public Library, 320 S. Second St., Montrose.

Events will continue May 11 in Telluride with a poetry writing workshop for high-school students from 2-3:15 p.m. in Room 311 at Telluride Middle School-High School, 725 W. Colorado, followed by a teacher workshop from 3:15-4:30 p.m. at Telluride Elementary School, 447 W. Columbia Ave. The workshop will include a discussion of effective and innovative teaching of poetry, hands-on practice of exercises and a discussion of poems suitable for school use. On May 12, Crow will give a workshop for elementary school children from 10-11:15 a.m. at Telluride Elementary School.

On May 12 from 6-7 p.m., Crow will give a public reading as the featured poet at the Telluride Writers’ Guild Monthly Reading. The reading, held at Ah Haa School for the Arts at 135 Spruce St., will focus on enhancing the local visibility of poetry. It will include discussion of methods which could be used to start local poetry projects.

"One of the premises of this forum is that poetry is a basic part of our human nature and its inborn creativity," Crow said. "Poetry is an essential element of culture which should be available as part of a community’s cultural life."

Crow, who has read poetry throughout the country, was selected as Colorado’s poet laureate on the basis of artistic excellence, service in the advancement of poetry and interest in presenting poetry and literature to Colorado and the nation. Her books of poetry include "I Have Tasted the Apple" and "Borders."

Her translations of poetry include "Engravings Torn from Insomnia: Poems by Olga Orozco" and "Homesickness: Selected Poems by Enrique Lihn."

The Montrose/Telluride program is part of a series which Crow is presenting in five communities around the state. Other program sites include Durango, Grand Junction, Lafayette and Colorado Springs. "Words on the Wing II" is a continuation of last year’s "Word on the Wing" Program that included five other Colorado communities.

This program was made possible by grants from the Colorado Endowment for the Humanities and the College of Liberal Arts at Colorado State University.

For more information about the program, call Stephanie Owen in the English department at (970) 491-6843 or Judy Kohin, director of Ah Haa School for the Arts, at (970) 728-3886.