Poet draws more than 80 people to Art Reach for Wellspring Literary Series
The Wellspring Literary Series attracted more than 80 students, faculty and members of the community Monday night for a visit from poet, playwright and essayist, Anne-Marie Oomen.
Oomen’s reading comes as part of the fourth season of the series, hosted by Art Reach, 111 E. Broadway St., and Robert Fanning, assistant professor of English language and literature.
Fanning said the literary series is held to bring local writers to downtown Mount Pleasant.
"I love finding Michigan poets and writers," he said.
Professor of music Bob Lindahl welcomed guests by playing his trombone. Throughout the night, Lindahl entertained the crowd with three songs, including ending on an improvisational piece fueled by audience participation.
Following Lindahl, CMU student Ben Harris readied the audience by reading five of his poems, including "Independence Day Detroit" and "Absolutely Nothing May be Placed in Front of this Door."
Oomen then took the stage, reading seven of her works, all of which incorporated water.
"It's important to find the connection between language and sound and movement," she said.
Oomen began with two memorized pieces, then read passages "From Uncoded Word" and "An American Map."
Following her poetry reading and Lindahl's final piece, audience members lined up to buy books and get them signed by Oomen.
Oomen read a combination of poetry and prose. Her writing extends to several genres. She is the author of two memoirs, several plays, two collections of poetry and additionally a book of essays. Oomen is is a professor at Pine Manor College in MA.
After the event, Berkley senior Robert Cameron said he was attending the reading for his English 294: Introduction to Creative Writing class.
“It was very cool. It wasn’t what I expected,” he said. “It was a pretty good turn out and these guys were good.”
Wellspring will return at 7 p.m. on Feb. 11 with Glenn Shaheen. His work has appeared in "Ploughshares," "The New Republic," "Subtropics" and elsewhere.