Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Pizza and Poetry...Pizzatry?

Last week, I attended a Pizza Poetry event in New Orleans. It was sponsored by Big Class, a community writing program that does absolutely amazing work with New Orleans students. I would highly reccommend clicking the link to the program and seeing what they are all about. I was lucky enough to chat with Big Class director Doug Keller, and I was truly impressed with his passion and vision for the program. I feel incredibly fortunate to have had this opportunity.

For Pizza Poetry, Big Class partners with area pizza restaurants (I had Pizza Delicious - the carmelized onion and prosciutto pizza was incredible), and, together, they include poems in and on the pizza boxes for the entire day. This allows Big Class and its student writers to reach out into the community in a truly unique manner.

All those who were in attendance on Pizza Poetry night at Big Class were asked to write. The student writers provided prompts for the adult writers, and I chose to write to the prompt that said "A giant chicken is about to pluck out all your hairs. How are you going to react?" Below is my pizza poem.

You pluck me; I pluck you.
Eye for an eye - feather for a hair.
We’ll both be cold come winter,
But only one of us is delicious.

What’s your beef, chicken?
Sure I consumed, but I didn’t bread your friends.
Alright, maybe I did, but such is life.
Life isn’t fair, fowl, so beaks off my skull.

I promise to eat less eggs - or more - how does that work?
I will advocate to free you from ranges -
You specifically; I can’t speak for all hens.
“If you throw back a starfish…” or something like that.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

CCSWP Heads to the Big Easy

This weekend, I'm headed to New Orleans for the National Writing Project's Urban Sites Network Conference. I'll be presenting a workshop on Purpose First Writing. It's something that I've been working on for the past few years.

I'm excited to share this work with a national audience in New Orleans, but I'm equally excited to introduce Purpose First Writing to our CCSWP participants. This work will be at the heart of CCSWP's Non-fiction Institute in Wethersfield. Students will get first-hand experience with Purpose First, and it will, hopefully, change the way they approach writing when they return to school in the Fall. Check back for updates from the conference!