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This week’s edition!

Students read work from Senior College Poetry Workshop

The poets were (l. to r.) Linda DeSantis, Nancy Orr, Harolyn Zaldumbide, instructor Bill Frayer, Diane Clay, Darlene Glover, and Eloise O’Neill.

Ten members of the Poetry Workshop at USM LAC’s Senior College recently invited friends and family to listen to their work. Before they read, each poet summed up their feelings about poetry. “People evolved,” said Nancy Orr, who had taken the course before. “We had to dig deeply to get across images we conceived,” observed Eloise O’Neil. “Poetry channels life experience in a positive direction,” noted Linda DeSantis.

“A new form does things to the poem,” noted instructor Bill Frayer, who explained that trying different forms of poetry, such as haiku, sonnet, rhyming, or free form, the poets embraced the varied “music of language.” In class, each member was given 10 minutes to read their poem of the week and receive suggestions from their peers.

The subjects were diverse. Images of summer, woodlands, kitchens, and early childhood are familiar to us all, yet every poem brought new insight. They did not duck difficult issues: getting rid of “life’s artifacts,” death “…like a handsome man at a bar, think twice before inviting him home.” Other poems were from an unusual point of view. How does a nasturtium, captured in a painting, feel? Does the wind animate the world? Can your brain get full of too much stuff? Though some poems brought a tear to the listener’s eye, the audience had wide smiles and hearty rounds of applause for all. During the reception that followed, the poets spoke of their fears, frustrations, and exhilaration as they worked on their creations.

This is the third year the Poetry Workshop has been offered by Senior College. If you are looking for something new to explore, join Senior College to take advantage of the one-day winter classes beginning in January and the Spring courses beginning in March. For membership information, call 780-5960 or see www.usm.maine.edu/seniorcollege.

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