Coffee Night poetry and prose reading set for April 16
Virginia Poet Laureate Sofia Starnes is the key
speaker at the spring semester’s Coffee Night, a reading and performing event
dedicated to the poetry and prose of The University of Virginia’s College at
Wise and community creative writers.
The event, sponsored by the Department of
Language and Literature, the Department of Communication Studies, and the
Jimson Weed staff, is set for Tuesday, April 16 at 6:30 p.m. in the Chapel of
All Faiths. Starnes will also give a poet laureate talk on “The Immediacy of
Poetry” at a public lecture set for Wednesday, April 17 at 1 p.m. in the Chapel
of All Faiths.
Her lecture will address poetry’s relevance to
everyday life, its unique immediacy to the reader, and how deeply the language of poetry connects to a
person’s life. Relying on personal experience and reflecting on the nature of
language, Starnes will share some thoughts and poems on the intimate
relationship and the dialogue between the poem and the reader and on the way a
poem relies on the reader to gain new life.
Coffee Night will also
Highland Voices: Writers and Performers of the College and Community,"
and Author Wendy Welch’s The Little Bookstore of Big
Stone Gap (St. Martin’s Press, 2012). Welch has a Ph.D. in Ethnography and runs
Tales of the Lonesome Pine Used Books and Café with her husband Jack in Big
Stone Gap. Her book has been featured in Redbook, Country Woman, People,
Huffington Post, Washington Post, The LA Times, and on NPR’s Weekend Edition,
among other places.
All contributors to the
new edition of the Jimson Weed, which will be released during Coffee Night, are
invited to present. A full program will be forthcoming. Those interested in participating in reading
or performing along with the featured writers may contact Lauren Miller, Jimson
Weed managing editor firstname.lastname@example.org, by
Starnes is poetry editor of The Anglican
Theological Review and critique editor of Creative Writing Critiques. She has
authored five books of poetry: The Soul's Landscape (Aldrich Poetry Prize,
2002); A Commerce of Moments (Pavement Saw Press, Editor’s Prize, 2003; Corpus
Homini: A Poem for Single Flesh (Whitebird Poetry Series Prize, Wings Press,
2008); Fully Into Ashes (Wings Press, 2011 and Love and the Afterlife (Franciscan
University, 2012). Her most recent work is Four Virginia Poets Laureate 2004-2012,
which she edited. She is the recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from the Virginia
Commission for the Arts, the Rainer Maria Rilke Poetry Prize, the Marlboro
Review Editor’s Prize, a Conference on Christianity and Literature Poetry
Prize, the Superior Achievement Award in Poetry by the Virginia Writer's Club,
and a Pushcart nomination (Green Hills Literary Lantern), among other recognitions.
In 2008, her work was selected for the Best of
the Decade Issue by Hawai’i Pacific Review, and in 2009, she was named
Distinguished Scholar by Union College in Barbourville, Kentucky. Starnes’s
work has appeared in numerous literary journals, including the Notre Dame Review,
Bellevue Literary Review, The Southern Poetry Review, Laurel Review, Blackbird,
and Hayden’s Ferry. She is the poetry editor of The Anglican Theological Review and is listed in Who's Who in
the World, Who's Who in America, and Who's Who of American Women.
Starnes earned a Licenciatura (Master’s) in
English Philology from the University of Madrid. She offers writing
tutorials and comprehensive editing services to writers of fiction, creative
nonfiction, and poetry, through Creative Writing Critiques. She lives in
Williamsburg, Virginia, with her husband, an internationally acclaimed chemist
and the Gottwald Professor of Chemistry Emeritus at the College of William and
Mary, Dr. Bill Starnes.
Coffee Night events are free and open to the public. Students will receive cultural credit for attendance. For more information, contact College Relations at 276-376-1027.