Jun. 29th, 2017

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Poet Gwendolyn Brooks would have been 100 this month, and the Poetry Foundation is making a big deal of it, including sponsoring an animated version of her talking about, then reading, "We Real Cool."
(not trying to embed it)
To make this all about me, as usual, I discovered Brooks in about 1972, when I did a couple of short segments a week on the Duke University radio station WDBS as part of the Durham Women's Radio Collective. One of my regular things was famous female poet of the week (I don't think I called it that). I don't remember how I decided to do that - I'm not very poetry-literate, but it seemed like a good thing at the time. I remember rummaging through the poetry section at the Durham Public library (then in a wooden Victorian building) to find stuff. The building may have been old and musty, but many of the books weren't. Some of the Anne Sexton books, for example, would have been fresh. She was still writing at the time. Having just looked her up on Wikipedia, I see that was basically my mother's age, and that she is buried in JP. Maybe I should make a pilgrimage, although I barely remember her poetry now.

A friend and I also read news at the station on Friday nights.

We were both in the band in high school, and more than once we carpooled from marching at half-time at a football game to the station to read the 11 o'clock news.


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