IWC poetry month events planned
MOUNT PLEASANT — National Poetry Month will be celebrated at Iowa Wesleyan College with three events.
WordUp! Wesleyan, IWC’s annual celebration of language and poetry, will be held from 12:30-2 p.m. April 2 in the Howe Student Activity Center at Iowa Wesleyan College.
Students in IWC English classes will present poetry-based service-learning projects completed with community partners such as Park Place Elder Living, WisdomQuest and Grasshopper Green Preschool. Student organizations are sponsoring a number of activities to encourage linguistic creativity. There will be opportunities to write bad love poetry, compose six-word stories, invent word definitions and make poems based on photos, among other activities.
An open mic poetry competition from 1:30-2 p.m. is planned, with original work encouraged. The public is invited.
Poet Keith Ratzlaff, professor of English at Central College, will help with judging the spoken work competition. He also will offer a reading of his own poetry at 7 p.m. p.m. in the Chapel Auditorium.
His performance is free and open to the public.
Ratzlaff has taught creative writing and literature at Central College for 25 years. He is the author of several books of poetry, including “Then, A Thousand Crows,” “Dubious Angels” and “Man Under a Pear Tree.” His awards include the 1996 Anhinga Prize for Poetry, the Theodore Roethke Award, and a Pushcart Prize. His poems and reviews have appeared in Poetry Northwest, The Georgia Review, New England Review, The Threepenny Review, Colorado Review and North American Review.
He is a graduate of Bethel College and earned a master of fine arts degree in creative writing at Indiana University Bloomington.
Readings from Design, the College’s literary magazine, will be held at 11 a.m. April 4in the Chapel Auditorium.
Design includes poetry, prose and artwork contributed by students, staff and community members. It is produced by the Iowa Wesleyan College campus chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society.
The program is open to the public.
The Design reading will be followed immediately by a reception in the chapel foyer. The reception will honor Iowa Wesleyan College English faculty member William Weiershauser, who will retire this spring.
Weiershauser has been a sponsor for the IWC chapter of Sigma Tau Delta for 20 years. He has been on the IWC faculty for 31 years.
The public is invited.