Press contact: Craig D'Ooge (202) 707-9189
Public contact: Poetry and Literature Center (202) 707-5394
April 3, 2000
A Young People's Poetry Week Celebration:
Young Voices from the Nation's Capital at the
Library of Congress
On Thursday evening, April 13, students in grades 4-12 from the Washington area will read favorite poems and their own original poems, accompanied by Dolores Kendrick, Poet Laureate of Washington and renowned children's book author Eloise Greenfield. The program, presented under the aegis of the Library's Gertrude Clarke Whittall Poetry and Literature Fund and the District Lines Poetry Project of the Federation of Friends of the D.C. Public Library, will be at 6:45 p.m. in the Montpelier Room on the sixth floor of the James Madison Memorial Building. Tickets are not required.
Dolores Kendrick is the author of the award-winning The Women of Plums: Narratives in the Voices of Slave Women (1989), which has also been set to music and released on a CD version as The Color of Dusk (1996). In 1997, the poems were adapted as a play and performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; this adaptation won the New York New Playwrights Award in 1997. Her other collections of poetry include Now Is the Thing to Praise and Through the Ceiling. Ms. Kendrick is only the second poet ever to serve as the District of Columbia's Poet Laureate. She was appointed to the position in the spring of 1999, a decade after the death of Sterling A. Brown, the District's first Poet Laureate. Ms. Kendrick has been a Fulbright Fellow, winner of the Deep South Writers' Award, and editor of the magazine Dasein. A native of Washington, D.C., where she was instrumental in creating the School Without Walls curriculum, she has also lived and taught in such places as New Hampshire, Hawaii, Spain, and Northern Ireland. Ms. Kendrick is now at work on an adaptation of The Women of Plums for production at the National Theater in 2000, and she has been commissioned to write a poem to be included in a sculpture to be placed in front of the Martin Luther King Jr. Library in downtown Washington.
Eloise Greenfield is the author of more than 30 children's books of fiction, poetry, and biography. Her more than 40 awards and honors include the Coretta Scott King Award for Africa Dream, the Carter G. Woodson Award for Rosa Parks, the Irma Simonton Black Award for She Come Bringing Me That Little Baby Girl, and the George G. Stone Center for Children's Books 1990 Recognition of Merit Award for Honey, I Love. For many of her books, she has received Notable Book citations from the American Library Association, the National Council of Teachers of English, and the National Council for the Social Studies.
Ms. Greenfield has received, for the body of her work, the 1993 Lifetime Achievement Award from Moonstone Inc., Philadelphia; the 1993 Children's Literature and Social Responsibility Award from the Boston Educators for Social Responsibility; and an honorary Doctor of Education degree from Wheelock College.
# # #