One of Clark County Poet Laureate Heather Lang-Cassera's missions is to spread poetry throughout the County, and not just the reading of poetry, but the writing of poetry, too. "Poetry is for everyone," says Heather Lang-Cassera.
On Saturday, Aug. 24, Lang-Cassera led a Re-Discovering Haiku Workshop at the Moapa Valley Recreation Center in Overton, Nevada. This workshop will also be offered again on Thursday, Sept. 19, at 11 a.m. at the Winchester Dondero Cultural Center as well as on Saturday, Oct. 5, at 1 p.m. at the Clark County Wetlands Park. Attendees will leave having written at least one or two poems of their own.
"Because haiku are small," says Lang-Cassera, "we can explore a number of poems even in a short afternoon. Moreover, they make for a good study of how every word in a poem truly counts toward the meaning of the poem, and most people have some sort of previous experience with haiku, yet the traditions and details of the haiku are so much deeper and richer than many of us have been taught."
In coordination with Poetry Promise, Inc., the Clark County Poet Laureate will also be bringing Vanessa Couto Johnson, a Lecturer at Texas State University, to the Winchester Dondero Cultural Center on Saturday, Sept. 7, at 2 p.m. to lead a Prose in Poetry Workshop. Attendees will write a prose poem during the session.
Community members can also join Brazilian-Texan Couto Johnson for her reading with Henderson local Elizabeth Quiñones-Zaldaña at the Poetry Matters! reading on Friday, Sept. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Nevada Humanities Program Gallery, which is in the heart of the Downtown Arts Districts' First Friday festivities. Poetry Matters! is a monthly poetry series curated by Poet Laureate Heather Lang-Cassera and local poet and host extraordinaire Ms. AyeVee.
In addition to haiku and prose poetry workshops, Clark County residents can study the literary calavera, Day of the Dead poetry, with Poet Laureate Lang-Cassera and Nevada literary steward Quiñones-Zaldaña. Lang-Cassera will be leading this workshop twice, once on Friday Oct. 11 at 5:30 p.m. and again on Saturday Oct. 12 at 2 p.m. at the Winchester Dondero Cultural Center.
Community members interested in exploring poetry through visual art can join Lang-Cassera for Answering Art: A Poetry Workshop at the UNLV Barrick Museum. Attendees will explore Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya's vibrant murals through ekphrasis, writing poems that describe and respond to visual art. Cassera will start by reading examples of poems that respond to works of art. Attendees will be offered prompts and guidance. This workshop will run twice, once on Thursday, Nov. 7, at 3:30 p.m. and again on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 2 p.m.
Poets who have already written poetry but are interested in receiving feedback in an encouraging environment might also be interested in the Poetry Nuts & Bolts Writing Workshops hosted by Lang-Cassera at the Green Valley Library. These will take place on Thursday, Sept. 12 at 6 p.m., and Thursday, Oct. 10, at 6 p.m. These peer-workshop-style workshops are led by Lang-Cassera and Henderson Libraries librarian Emilee Wirshing.
Send all questions to Clark County, Nevada Poet Laureate Heather Lang-Cassera at firstname.lastname@example.org.