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JUNE 2024

Constance Vannest talking about Wolves & poet/writer Elle Metrick sharing work

The June 19th Stories & Poems series at the Lone Cone Library at 6 p.m. will feature Constance Vannest of Nucla talking about wolves and local poet-writer-journalist Elle Metrick of Norwood sharing her work.

“Constance gave a wonderful presentation with Norwood’s Bill Wilson in Naturita at the Stories & Poems gathering there two months ago,” said Art Goodtimes, Talking Gourds Poetry Project director. “They stimulated a great discussion on wolves as Bill did in Norwood last month. Bring your stories and questions about wolves to this month’s evening presentation.”

He also noted that the Norwood Stories & Poems had such a successful evening with two speakers last month that the group is going to try and stick with that dual format, bringing both storytelling and poetry to Wrights Mesa.

Born in South Dakota, Vannest moved to Colorado in early ‘80s. She’s spent most of her 70 years on this planet working with wolves and hybrids. She was especially honored when her “kindred spirit friend Lissa” Margetts chose her to take Lobo and Pearl when her rescue operation, the Rocky Mountain Ark Wildlife Center, closed in 2008.

Given how much misinformation has accumulated around wolves, Vannest explained, “I am a firm believer in education based on truth not fear. We, for the benefit of future generations, must value our natural resources and give them the respect they deserve.”

Vannest’s presentation will be followed by Norwood’s Elle Metrick.

At 57, and despite decades of fighting it, Metrick is just beginning to accept that she is what she once wanted to be: a relatively self-sufficient jane-of-many-trades.

“I’ve taught school, run rivers for a living, made and shoveled snow, lived in my truck and a tipi, built a straw bale home with my (late) husband and raised a lovely, thoughtful and creative human being,” Metrick said. “Poetry has been my lifeblood since before I can remember. Sometimes, I can be found on stage with my dear poet friends Art Goodtimes and Daiva Chesonis as the Writes Mesa Gang. I have two published books of poetry. I dabble in creative nonfiction and am deep in a fiction project. I write for local newspapers and magazines and teach a monthly writing group at Lone Cone Library.”

This free series happens on the third Wednesday of each month. With our new dual format, each featured guest will give a 1-20 min. presentation, followed by a short question and answer period after each presentation. After that, there’s a passing of the gourd, where community members are encouraged to share stories about wolves or poems — their own, or others’ that they know and like.

A collaboration of the Lone Cone Library and the Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds poetry program, Stories & Poems is free and open to all ages, thanks to the generosity of the library, private donors and Talking Gourds’ Fischer & Cantor poetry contests. For more information, text 970-729-0220 or email Goodtimes at <art@tellurideinstitute.org>.

 


FEBRUARY 2024

County Poet Laureate rescheduled at Lone Cone Library in February.

Stories & Poems: Norwood is held on the third Wednesday of every month, starting at 6:00 pm at the Lone Cone Library.

Back after having to cancel last month due toCovid, San Miguel County Poet Laureate Joanna Yonder will be
the featured guest at Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds Stories &Poems series at the Lone Cone Library.

The free performance starts at 6 pm on the third Wednesday of this month, February 21 st . It’s followed by a passing of the gourd, where community members are encouraged to share stories and poems, their own — or others’ that they know and like.

“Joanna is a strong performer,” said Talking Gourds director Art Goodtimes. “Her poems are like favorite stories enchant. Born into a rural family, she is comfortable with country ways and resort town chic.”

Yonder lives as caretaker on a 200-acre ranch on Hastings Mesa, where she grows food, hunts, and keeps small livestock and bees. She came to this corner of the “wild west” in following a fierce love of climbing ice and rock. She stayed to work at Telluride’s Wilkinson Public Library, where she has been on staff for over ten years. She is deeply interested in the future of the American West, in collective liberation, and in community
building through storytelling.

In 2022 she was recommended for the County Poet Laureate title by the Telluride Institute and appointed for a two-year term by the Board of County Commissioners. However, infused with many new ideas on how to expand the program, the Institute will be asking San Miguel County to extend her term another year in order to give her enough time to restructure the county poet laureate project. Learn more about it here: https://sanmiguelcountyco.gov/708/Poet-Laureate

Stories & Poems follows a simple format. There will be a performance of a featured storyteller or poet, followed by a question and answer session and then a Gourd Circle. At that point, everyone present will be invited to tell a story, perform a poem (an original or a favorite written by someone else), read a short section of prose or simply pass the gourd on to the next person.

A collaboration of the Lone Cone Library and the Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds poetry program, Stories & Poems is free and open to all ages, thanks to the generosity of the library, private donors and Talking Gourds’ Fischer Cantor poetry contests. For more information, text 970-729-0220 or email Goodtimes at art@tellurideinstitute.org. Or visit the website: www.tellurideinstitute.org/talking-gourds

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