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TELLURIDE … The Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds poetry program kicks into lyric gear with the first autumn Poetry Club meeting featuring Mary Oishi on Monday Sept. 16 in Norwood and Tuesday Sept. 17 in Telluride. Times are 6:30 p.m. in Norwood and 6 p.m. in Telluride.

Oishi, who lives in Albuquerque, is a Japanese American poet and public radio professional who was raised by the KKK. She started her 23-year public radio career at KVNF in Paonia, Colorado, and worked for 2 more public stations as both Development Director and on-air host of blues programming, most of those at KUNM in Albuquerque. Currently she is host of Wang Dang Doodle, a blues show on KSFR in Santa Fe.

She is also in the final edits stage of her memoir, The Little Jap That Lillie Raised, and several children’s books about a dog named Mingus. Oishi is the author of Spirit Birds They Told Me (West End Press, 2011), and co-author of Rock Paper Scissors (Swimming With Elephants Publications, 2018) — finalist for the 2018 New Mexico/Arizona Book Award for Poetry.

She is one of twelve U.S. poets in 12 Poetas: Antologia De Nuevos Poetas Estadounidenses (La Herrata Feliz and MarEsCierto, 2017), a project of the Mexican Ministry of Culture. Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies, poetry journals, newspapers, and digital publications.

The reading on Monday Sept. 16th will be in Norwood at Million Miles Away and Tuesday Sept. 17th at the Telluride Arts Gallery across from the Wilkinson Library. The theme for the reading will be Blue.

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In October, the 14th in Norwood and the 15th in Telluride, Marie Luna of Paonia will be the featured reader. The theme will be Growing.

In November we will have two readings. Nov. 5th Barbara Rockman of Santa Fe will be the featured reader at the Telluride Arts Gallery. Author of Sting and Nest: Poems (Sunstone Press, 2011), which won the New Mexico-Arizona book award, she teaches at the Santa Fe Community College and has a new book out: to cleave (Univ. of New Mexico Press, 2019). The theme will be Going Home.

Nov. 18th in Norwood and Nov. 19th in Telluride, local poets Suzanne Cheavens and Stephanie Osan will share the spotlight. The theme will be Fall Colors.

And for our last reading of the year, on Dec. 16th in Norwood and Dec. 17th in Telluride, San Miguel County Poet Laureate Emerita Elissa Dickson will give a holiday show before she leaves for a six months sabbatical. Theme will be Time.

Poetry Club readings in Norwood begin at 7:30 p.m. and in Telluride at 6 p.m. with club news – readings, books, etc. Next the featured reader shares work for 45 minutes to an hour. There’s a short break. And then we pass the Gourd, and everyone gets to share their own poem — or a piece by a favorite author on the month’s theme.

The Norwood address of Million Miles Away is 1150 Z42 Rd. (map available upon request) and the Telluride address is 135 W. Pacific Ave.

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