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Carmen Tafolla, Poet Laureate Of Texas, Launches School Project

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Chris Eudaily
/
TPR News

Part of the Texas poet laureate’s job is to introduce the power of poetry to every corner of the state. And that’s a charge that current Texas Poet Laureate Carmen Tafolla takes very seriously.

Tafolla is launching a project called Planting Poet Trees – sowing seeds of inspiration in Texas Public Schools. She’s looking for schools that are dealing with shrinking budgets and underfunded libraries that she can engage with to participate in writing projects and poetry workshops.

An Advisory Committee will assist Dr. Tafolla in selecting the 20 schools to participate in the Planting Poet Trees program.
The State Poet Laureate will visit each school to provide an inspiring motivational speech about the power of education, a poetry reading, and one or two writing workshops. Through poetry readings, Dr. Tafolla can also share this message bilingually with the students, teachers, administrators, parents and family members

Learn more about the program by sending an e-mail to: carmentafollasabookings@yahoo.com

Beloved for her moving performances and poetry readings, Tafolla is a poet, storyteller, performance artist, motivational speaker, and Associate Professor at UT San Antonio. The author of more than 20 books, she is one of the most widely anthologized of Latina writers. Her work appears internationally in five languages in high school and university textbooks, newspapers and magazines, and elementary school readers. Chosen in 2012 as the first Poet Laureate of the City of San Antonio, she presented at more than 300 schools, universities, professional conferences, and community arts centers in her two-year tenure. Called by Roots author Alex Haley a “world-class writer,” she has received numerous awards, including the prestigious Americas Award, presented to her at the Library of Congress in 2010; five International Latino Book Awards; two Tomas Rivera Book Awards; two ALA Notable Books; a Charlotte Zolotow Award; the Art of Peace Award; and Top Ten Books for Babies. Dr. Tafolla has been recognized by the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies for work which “gives voice to the peoples and cultures of this land.”

David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi