WITS Reading for Meek ProTech HS

WITS Reading for Meek ProTech HS

[by Niko Rivas] Last Wednesday, 12 high school students gathered in their neighborhood café for the Writers in the Schools student reading. Miss Zumstein Bakery & Coffee Shop was warm and inviting; watercolors of animals filled the walls, a periwinkle cake—emblazoned with doves and Prince’s “Love Symbol”—stirred joy in any pastry case passerby, and a brick…

Verselandia! 2016

Verselandia! 2016

[by Molly Simas] “So are you guys ready to get this party started?” Anis Mojgani said into the microphone. The packed house cheered enthusiastically in response. It was Monday, April 18, and Portlanders had filled the seats at Newmark Theatre for Verselandia! Poetry Grand Slam, an event featuring students from Portland and Gresham public high…

Verselandia 2016 Winners and Participants

Verselandia 2016 Winners and Participants

Congratulations to all the students who participated in Verselandia 2016! It was a fantastic night and we’ll be posting a recap soon. In the meantime, you can watch the entire show on the PPS website by clicking here, and these all the students who participated: 1st place: Tea Johnson, Grant HS 2nd place: Lily Lamadrid, Franklin…

Poet Rita Dove visits Roosevelt High School

Poet Rita Dove visits Roosevelt High School

Poet Rita Dove was in Portland last week to accept The Stone Award from Oregon State University, which is presented to a major American author who has created a body of critically acclaimed work and who has mentored young writers. OSU also partnered with Literary Arts to bring Dove to Roosevelt High School, where she met…

Delve Seminar Summaries: The Nonfiction of Joan Didion

Delve Seminar Summaries: The Nonfiction of Joan Didion

[by Patrick Findler] Meeting 1 My fellow Delvers and I began our four-week exploration of Joan Didion by discussing our general impressions of her, gathered either from reading her works or from her public reputation. Some of us spoke of our “long love affair” with her, while to others she was just “part of the…

WITS Slam Poetry Class at St. John’s Library

WITS Slam Poetry Class at St. John’s Library

On a Saturday afternoon, in a small events room at the St. Johns Library, the only sound was the percussion of pens against the table through single sheets of paper—a gentle, tiny thunder, like rain on a tin roof. The writers were 11 teens, working silently and intently during a one-hour slam poetry workshop led…

Christina Henríquez visits Centennial High School

Christina Henríquez visits Centennial High School

On the morning before her lecture at the Schnitz, Everybody Reads 2016 author Cristina Henríquez visited Centennial High School in Gresham for a Q&A with 82 students who were reading her novel, The Book of Unknown Americans. Students filed in whispering with one another, glancing at the author, many of them carrying copies of her…

Wordstock 2016: News and Updates

Literary Arts has been hard at work preparing for our second year as the presenter of Wordstock: Portland’s Book Festival, and we wanted to share some early updates and announcements with you as we look forward to the festival’s return on Saturday, November 5, 2016. We are thrilled to announce that Wordstock will present author…

2016 Oregon Book Awards finalists: Poetry

2016 Oregon Book Awards finalists: Poetry

The 2016 Oregon Book Awards ceremony takes place April 11 at the Gerding Theater. Join us! You can purchase tickets to the ceremony at Brown Paper Tickets. You can also cast your vote online for the 2016 Readers Choice Award. This years winners of the Oregon Book Award, including the Readers Choice Award, will be announced at…

Delve Seminar Summary: Here: Facts, Fictions, and Memory in the Work of Claudia Rankine

Delve Seminar Summary: Here: Facts, Fictions, and Memory in the Work of Claudia Rankine

[by Cindy Williams Gutiérrez] with grateful acknowledgment for the contributions of guide Samiya Bashir and participants Alida, Amy, Bealeka, Chrystal, Jennifer, Kimberley, Paula, Susheela, Tara, and Wendy   Introduction This provocative Delve seminar was based on the premise of engagement. Claudia Rankine’s poetry collections, Don’t Let Me Be Lonely and Citizen, insist on engagement with…