Tag Archives: Fear Nothing of the Future or the Past

Harding University

 

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Yesterday my writing took me to Harding University. I met with an Intro to Poetry class in the morning, visited with students and faculty over pizza, and read in Cone Chapel in the late afternoon. This marks my third visit to Harding, and it was as beautiful as ever, maybe even more so, not only because I was teaching and reading in azaleas and dogwoods, but I was honored to be introduced by Terry Engel as a friend of its English Department.Macri_ConesChapel_Harding.jpg

Between events, I sat out on campus, read a little, and watched the world go by. A student who couldn’t come to my reading took the time to find and talk with me.

Oftentimes as I prepare for events like these, I think of what I want to say, but in this visit, I realized I was thinking more of what Harding has been saying to me. The students were fun, funny, curious, and kind. Nick Boone has always had a knack of encouraging me to take myself seriously as a writer at the exact moments I doubted my work. So yesterday was the first time I felt comfortable to read from each of my three books, Fear Nothing of the Future or the Past, with a title that speaks for itself; Underwater Panther, with its look at the past we’ve inherited; and Ore Horizon, with its question, when our environment is being damaged, both our natural world and how we deal with each other as people, what do we do?

Macri_Harding_March2017.jpgAll this is colored with my deepening sense of mourning, as the first anniversary of my father’s passing draws near. But something my husband said to me weeks ago has stuck in my mind: some people approach the world from a foundation of fear. They cling to the past because they feel frightened. But some people approach the world from a place of hope. They feel scared, too, but they look to the past to help create new ways to move forward to something better. Poetry is part of such hope, as are the people and places who celebrate it.

With thanks to Harding for a good day.

 

 

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Delta Visual Arts Show

This spring, I’m grateful to be part of three events. The first is this Saturday, February 25, the Delta Visual Arts Show in Newport, Arkansas.Macri_tulipFeb2017.jpg

This show focuses on the Delta’s significance and its potential. It isn’t about going back. It’s about moving forward. The Blue Bridge Center for the Delta Arts project is a collaboration between an economic development commission and an arts council that recognizes the powerful role that the arts can play in a region’s renewal.

The show includes over 180 artists of every type in booths, solo shows, competitions, workshops, presentations, performances, and readings. There will be activities for adults and children, and the downtown itself is part of the action as art fills its buildings. You’ll find me with Underwater Panther and Fear Nothing of the Future or the Past in the W.A. Billingsley Memorial Jackson County Library with more than other twenty authors in the Authors’ Corner.

A writer I look forward to seeing again is Annie England Noblin. We met when I read at ASU-Mountain Home, where she teaches. Her book is the perfectly titled Sit! Stay! Speak! and she’ll be reading at noon. My favorite character in her book is the Delta itself. She captures how it testifies in a way that no one can ignore.

Come by and enjoy this day.

Arkansas Literary Festival

Tomorrow finds me in Little Rock at the Arkansas Literary Festival. I’ve been there in the past leading workshops and serving on panels, but the 2016 Festival is particularly special, not only because I’ll be reading as part of two sessions, but because this year my name appears on the new Readers’ Map of Arkansas.

When I first came here, Arkansas was known as the Land of Opportunity. This has come true in ways I never would have dared to dream. I am thankful and humbled.

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At 10 a.m., I’ll be reading from Underwater Panther in a session called “Mississippi Pinocchio in Jaguar Pajamas” with Ariana-Sophia Kartsonis and George David Clark, moderated by Heather K. Hummel of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and then at 11:30 a.m., I’ll be reading from Fear Nothing of the Future or the Past in a session called “On the Map” in celebration of the Readers’ Map of Arkansas with Tyrone Jaeger and Suzi Parker, moderated by Hope Coulter of Hendrix College.

The Central Arkansas Library System has done a great job putting together a great festival. Check out full schedule here and see the opportunities you might find!