Final Reading by Poet Laureate as Term Ends

Poet Laureate Dianne Hicks Morrow invites readers and listeners to the Open Mic on Wednesday, December 9th from 7:00-9:00 pm. All are welcome at the Baha’i Centre, 20 Lapthorn Ave. The Centre is wheelchair accessible and alcohol-free. Lapthorn Ave is off Longworth Ave., the only side street between Birchwood School and the 1911 Jail Pizza Delight.

“I’m grateful that members of the Baha’i Centre have offered their welcoming space for this event. As well, I’m pleased to partner with members of the PEI Writers Guild and TWiG, for them to continue the open mic series after my term finishes at the end of December,” states Morrow.

Featured reader on December 9th will be Dianne herself. It will her final reading as poet laureate as her three-year term comes to an end. “Encouraging writers to share their writing in public for the first time has been the most exciting part of hosting nineteen Open Mics. I’ve also enjoyed holding Open Mics at libraries across the Island, performing at the Frank Ledwell Storytelling and Comedy festivals in St. Peter’s each summer, and writing new poems for the Confederation Centre’s Symons Medal Gala, in honour of medal recipients Paul Martin, Stephen Lewis, and Paul Gross.”

Other highlights of her term include: writing an Ode to Fallen Elms for the memorial held at Trinity United Church, twice reading a poem at City Hall during National Poetry Month, and reading her Pizza Box poem at Government House as part of the National Reading Town Canada initiative. Morrow has given poetry workshops for libraries, schools, and the PEI Writers Guild; created a new poetry course for Seniors College; and read poems to Rotary and other groups. As well, she encouraged poets to submit poems to the poetrypei.com website, begun by former poet laureate, David Helwig.

“My hope is that these activities helped to make poetry less intimidating by showing how anyone can write a poem, and that a poem can be about anything,” says Morrow.

Dianne Hicks Morrow is an award-winning poet and a non-fiction writer who has called PEI home for over forty years. Her collection What Really Happened Is This: A Poetry Memoir (Acorn Press 2011), won the 2012 PEI Book Award for Poetry. Long Reach Home (Acorn Press, 2002) contains poems that won a Milton Acorn Poetry Award and an Atlantic Writing Competition Poetry Award. Her non-fiction Kindred Spirits: Relationships that Spark the Soul (Acorn Press, 2005) includes interviews with PEI’s new premier Wade MacLauchlan and his kindred-spirit partner Duncan McIntosh, as well as interviews with over twenty other Atlantic Canadians who talk about the kindred spirits in their lives. She has given readings and workshops across Canada, as well as in Mexico and Australia. She teaches two popular courses, Writing from Life and Anyone Can Write a Poem, at PEI Seniors College. She received the Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Literary Arts on Prince Edward Island in 2008, and was appointed PEI Poet Laureate in 2013.

At the December 9th Open Mic Dianne plans to read from her new book, Fixing Up The Farmhouse: Forty Years of Living, Loving, and Lamenting, as well as some new poems.

Readers can sign up at 7 p.m. to read their own poetry or prose, anywhere from three to five minutes. Admission is free or by donation. Please contact Dianne at peipoetlaureate@gmail.com with any questions.

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