February 2, 2010 Poet Laureate's Project, "Poetry for the Mind's Joy," Featured on Library of Congress Website
Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Patricia Gray (202) 707-5394
Detailed information on U.S. Poet Laureate Kay Ryan’s poetry project with community colleges—“Poetry for the Mind’s Joy”—can now be found on the Library of Congress website at www.loc.gov/poetry/mindsjoy/.
Ryan, a longtime community college teacher of remedial English, last fall announced the “Poetry for the Mind’s Joy” project to highlight poetry being written on community-college campuses.
The poetry project’s new web page includes information on a poetry contest, which ends February 25, and information on the April 1 videoconference with Kay Ryan and selected community-college students and officials across the nation. The web page also features a video of Ryan discussing her poetry project.
The Community College Humanities Association, www.ccha-assoc.org, is administering the poetry contest. Winning poems will be chosen by each community college and the winners will become eligible to be included in the anthology on the new web page. The anthology will be displayed this spring as a virtual book with digital page-turning technology.
The videoconference, which will include a discussion on how to write poetry, will be hosted by MAGPI, the Mid Atlantic Gigapop in Philadelphia for Internet 2, www.magpi.net/, in collaboration with the Arts and Humanities Initiative of Internet2, www.internet2.edu. This event will be streamed live to the web, and will demonstrate the online possibilities available for educational institutions working with the Library of Congress.
The Poetry and Literature Center at the Library of Congress administers the poetry series, which began in the 1940s and is the oldest in the Washington area and among the oldest in the United States. The readings and lectures are free and have been largely supported since 1951 by a gift from the late Gertrude Clarke Whittall. The center is also the home of the Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, a position that has existed since 1936, when the late Archer M. Huntington endowed the Chair of Poetry at the Library of Congress.