National Poetry Month in New Orleans

It’s that time of year again; for those in the New Orleans area, there’s a bounty of poetry-related events to celebrate National Poetry Month. First up are two events on the same day, the annual (and much-loved) Poets Reading Poets event at the Latter Branch of the NOPL on April 6th at 2pm, and far, far downriver, the Edible Book Fair at the Alvar Branch. Unfortunately they’re concurrent with time as well as place, but book lovers on either end of town have much to look forward to. Downtown folk, save the Uptown crowd some leftovers?

As ever, the 17 Poets reading series continues with a string of excellent performers (full list available here) every Thursday night, and I’m honored to be leading a poetry appreciation night at the Norman Mayer branch of the NOPL at the end of the month. Further bulletins as events warrant on that, but until then, hope to see you out and about during one of the loveliest months of the year — no matter what old Tom would have said.

Tennessee Williams Festival

In case you live outside New Orleans, or under a rock within it, the Tennessee Williams Festival is this week. Taking place downtown in the French Quarter, in and around the Hotel Monteleone, it’s a blast — and this year’s program has some absolute knockouts, including the Melanated Writers Collective performing this Friday night. Tickets are still available, but after Wednesday, you’ll have to get them at the door. I promise: they’re worth it.

2013 Mississippi Poetry Out Loud winner

This just in, from this afternoon’s contest:

The MSPOL 2013 State Finals Contest – held on Thursday, March 7 – will be broadcast by Mississippi Public Television on Saturday, March 9, following the basketball tournament – probably around 4PM. Our new 2013 State Champion is Akane Little, a senior at Starkville HS. Second place went to senior Denzell Jones from Water Valley HS and third went to Bailey Brilley, a junior at St. Joseph Catholic HS in Madison.

Congratulations to Akane and to all the other contestants!

Mississippi State Poetry Out Loud competition

The Mississippi state finals of the Poetry Out Loud competition, for which I am honored to serve again as a judge, are this coming Thursday, March 7th, at the Mississippi Public Broadcasting studios. Last year we sent our state winner, Kristen Dupard, on to the national championships — to win them — so for any poetry lovers in the Jackson area, come on down. It’s a fantastic afternoon and a joy to spend time in the company of such wonderful, talented contestants. More details are available at the MAC website.