SCC Celebrates National Poetry Month with Janice HarringtonWritten by Theresa Rose on March 11, 2015
West Burlington, IA- Southeastern Community College (SCC) will celebrate April as National Poetry Month by hosting a Visiting Writers Series event on Saturday, April 4, at 8:00 p.m. Scheduled to read is Professor Janice N. Harrington, a nationally acclaimed and award-winning author. SCC’s Culture on Campus Committee and Di Dante Literature & Writing Club will co-host the event.
SCC English & Creative Writing Instructor and Di Dante Advisor Charles Burm notes, “Members of SCC’s Culture on Campus Committee feel it is important to provide our students and the greater community with cultural opportunities that otherwise may be difficult to access. It is our honor and pleasure to bring this distinguished writer to our campus.”
The reading will be held in the Little Theatre, Room 433, on SCC’s West Burlington campus and will be followed by a brief question and answer session with the author. All Visiting Writers Series events are free and open to the public, but space is limited. Guests are encouraged to arrive and be seated by 7:45 p.m. Free refreshments will be provided at the close of the presentation.
Burm is quick in promoting the talent of the guest poet and the cooperative efforts of multiple organizations to make SCC’s Visiting Writers Series successful. “Janice Harrington has gathered much praise and has earned many awards for her writing. Her work has been widely published, and she is highly regarded in her field. We are fortunate to have her with us to celebrate National Poetry Month.”
In 2007, critically acclaimed poet and children’s book author Elizabeth Spires wrote, “[Harrington’s] poems are no less than lyric, spiritual documents, sung stories that soar above the weight and repetition of daily life, transforming that dailiness into something rich and precious. . . . Like a stringed instrument that continues to vibrate after the musician has ceased playing, Harrington’s poems resonate.”
Burm continues, “Much credit should go to the Burlington Area Arts Council, the Burlington Fine Arts League, the Society of Great River Poets, the SCC Foundation, and many area businesses and individuals for supporting SCC’s Culture on Campus Committee, the Visiting Writers Series, and Di Dante Literature & Writing Club students and projects. Through cooperative institutional and community efforts, we are able to host a writer of Professor Harrington’s caliber.”
Janice Harrington grew up in Alabama and Nebraska, and both those settings, especially rural Alabama, figure largely in her writing. Her first book of poetry, Even the Hollow My Body Made Is Gone (2007), won the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize from BOA Editions and the Kate Tufts Discovery Award. Her second book of poetry, The Hands of Strangers: Poems from the Nursing Home, was published in 2011. She is also the winner of a 2007 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship for Poetry and a 2009 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award for emerging women writers.
Her children’s books, The Chicken Chasing Queen of Lamar County (2007) and Going North (2004), have won many awards and citations, including a listing among TIME Magazine’s top 10 children’s books of 2007 and the Ezra Jack Keats Award from the New York Public Library in 2005.
Professor Harrington has worked as a public librarian and as a professional storyteller. She now teaches in the creative writing program at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.