Baseball Poetry Festival/ Meena Alexander Celebrated – Poetry News Roundup May 1st

Today in our poetry news round up, we take a look at the National Baseball Poetry Festival in its second year, and the Google Doodle dedicated to the poet Meena Alexander.

National Baseball Poetry Festival

The most memorable piece of writing about baseball is possibly one of the most famous poems in American literature. Casey at the Bat was penned in 1888, by Ernest Thayer.

This year, the National Baseball Poetry Festival will be celebrated in Worcester, Mass, Thayer’s home town. This year marks the second anniversary of what is an annual event. It will take place from 2nd – 5th May in Polar Park. The idea of the festival is that it will bring together a wide range of poetry and baseball fans all in the same place.

The Festival is the brainchild of Steven Biondolillo, who is a big fan of baseball and literature. He was inspired by the Oregon Fisherman’s poetry event. His company Biondolillo Associates are responsible for running the event alongside the Woo Sox and Baseball Bard, a baseball publication of poetry.

The festival programme includes a number of events for poetry lovers. There will also be a stadium tour, and a game between the Woo Sox and Iron pigs from Lehigh Valley. The first day will finish with a firework display. There will also be a number of poetry readings and also a poetry competition, as well as an open mic night.

Google Doodle Celebrates Meena Alexander

Born in Allahabad, India in 1951, Meena Alexander was a distinguished essayist, poet and professor. She published a total of six poetry collections in including works of note like “Quickly Changing River” and “The Bird’s Bright Ring”.

Her poetry was a celebration of beauty and depth and was inspired by the topics of identity, love and loss. She wove cultural references and several different languages through her writing.

She received widespread acclaim for her rich imagery and ability to capture the human experience. Not only was she well known for her poems, essays and short stories but her literary prowess was recognised with a Guggenheim Fellowship and the MacArthur Fellowship.

The Google doodle today honours Meena Alexander. The special doodle depicts the poet at her desk immersed in her work. The doodle is a tribute to the legacy that she leaves and the role that she had in the shaping of American literature. Her life was enriched by the roles that she had as an artist, feminist, immigrant and a figure with a strong Asian American Identity. She moved to America in the 1970s with her husband, and was determined to continue with her work. She was determined to find truth through poetry.

As a poet, she worked to express a range of feelings and identities through her work. She created a community full of like minded individuals from all over the world. As a teacher she inspired generations of students to think deeply.

Meena Alexander died in 2018, leaving behind an important literary legacy.

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