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Poet Laureate Kim Stafford, Elizabeth Woody and Jerry Ramsey will headline the event.

SUBMITTED PHOTOS - From left to right, Poet Laureate Kim Stafford, Jerry Ramsey, of Madras and former Poet Laureate Elizabeth Woody of Warm Springs.An exceptional gathering of poets — including Oregon's current and past poet laureate — will bring verse to the Central Oregon Community College's Madras campus from 6:30-8:30 Wednesday, April 10.

Kim Stafford, Oregon's poet laureate and the director of Lewis & Clark College's Northwest Writing Institute, along with Elizabeth Woody, of Warm Springs, past poet laureate of Oregon, and Madras poet Jarold Ramsey will all take part in the free event, which is open to the public.

In April, COCC is focusing on poetry, as part of National Poetry Month. The evening of readings and refreshments is the marquee event of COCC's monthlong tribute to poetry. Stafford will offer an encore reading at the COCC Redmond campus from 1-2:15 p.m. the following day. For a complete listing of events, visit cocc.edu/library.

"We are calling our presentation 'Honoring Family and Place,' because so often, when I write a poem, it is about my local experience — in a family, and in a place," said Stafford, who was named poet laureate of the state by Gov. Kate Brown in 2018. "I remember family camping trips to Cove Palisades Park, to Warm Springs, to Fort Rock, to the Metolius River, and in each place, as a family, we experienced the magic of a special place. Poetry comes from those encounters."

Organized by the staff of COCC's Barber Library, the lineup of National Poetry Month events is held throughout the month of April and includes an Open Mic Poetry Jam (April 18), poetry workshops (April 16 and 30, at the Prineville and Redmond campuses, respectively) and an "edible book" cake-and-reading finale (April 25).

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