Community College Poetry Project

Poet Laureate Kay Ryan announced the Community College Poetry Project, a national poetry project that embraces community colleges through an online poetry page "Poetry for the Mind's Joy" and a poetry-writing contest. (video at the Library of Congress site)

The project, in conjunction with the Community College Humanities Association, also designates April 1 as National Poetry Day on Community College Campuses.

Kay Ryan attended community college at Antelope Valley College in California and, until recently, taught remedial English for more than 30 years at community colleges around her home in Marin County.

"I simply want to celebrate the fact that right near your home, year in and year out, a community college is quietly—and with very little financial encouragement—saving lives and minds," said Ryan. "I can’t think of a more efficient, hopeful or egalitarian machine, with the possible exception of the bicycle."

Ryan added, "It is at a community college that a student can progress all the way from learning to read to learning to read poetry. That is, she can get the basic tools she must have to advance in the world and then go on and use them for the mind’s joy. This is a progression that improves both the student and her community every step
of the way."

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