Sunday, April 06, 2008

Happy National Poetry Month

I can't believe it's April already - National Poetry Month - being celebrated all around Oregon by the Oregon State Poetry Association (OSPA) with their spring conference in nearby Salem and other events around the Willamette Valley. It's a time to read and enjoy poems - well, we should do that all year around, of course.

And what better time to read works by Oregon's own poet laureate Lawson Inada. Inada is a retired professor from Southern Oregon University, who is the subject of a documentary What It Means to Be Free: A Video about Poetry and Japanese-American Internment which I show to my writing classes every term. The video works especially well as an argument of definition, so I plan to show it Friday in WR 222, to go along with their essay #1. For information on getting a copy of this video, check this link for where you can also sample the video and read some of Inada's commentary on the poems.

According to the Inada biography link above, he is also the subject of "an award-winning animated film of Legends from Camp made in collaboration with his son, artist Miles Inada" which I would like to see. I will look into ways to find that.

Meanwhile, to actually sample his poems check out Modern American Poetry and these three poems. And celebrate poetry!

Photo by Tom Peck from Modern American Poetry
6 April 2008


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