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Celebrate words

Share your favorite poems or your original ones during the month of February at branches of the Jackson County Libraries.

A highlight of the events is a poetry writing workshop with Oregon's Poet Laureate Lawson Inada, to be held Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Medford Library. Lawson is the author of five books, including "Legends from Camp," the winner of the 1992 American Book Award.

Here's a list of poetry related activities and events planned at branches of the Jackson County Libraries during February.

Ashland Library: 410 Siskiyou Blvd., 774-6980

  • Children's storytimes will feature poetry.
  • Young adult original poetry by Ashland Middle School students will be displayed.
  • The Friends of the Ashland Library will host a program based on the Favorite Poem Project during its annual meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 4.
  • Displays of poems and poetry books will be featured throughout the library.
  • Visitors are invited to write the name of their favorite poem on posters in the library. These posters will be displayed again in April during National Poetry Month.

Central Point Library: 116 S. Third St., 664-3228

  • Children's storytimes will feature poetry.
  • Children are invited to write poems and draw illustrations. To participate, forms may be picked up at the library and returned by the end of February. Each entry will be added to a collection of poems to be created by the Friends of the Central Point Library, which will sell the collection and donate the proceeds to the library.
  • A community poem will be created throughout the month of February. The poem will be published on the cover of a poetry collection created by Central Point youth.

Eagle Point Library: 239 W. Main St., 826-3313

  • Children's storytimes will feature poetry.
  • Lawson Inada, Oregon's Poet Laureate, will discuss poetry with students at Eagle Point High School on Thursday, Feb. 21. Inada will present his own poetry and that of the EPHS students from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the library.

Gold Hill Library: 202 Dardanelles St., 855-1994

A poetry contest for fourth- through eighth-grade students will be offered. Themes include "What I like About Reading," "My Favorite Book" or "Having a Local Library." The Friends of the Gold Hill Library will choose a winning poem from each grade level on Feb. 6. Prizes include a certificate, a poem published in the Gold Hill Nugget and a gift certificate to a local book store. Prizes will be provided by the Friends of the Gold Hill Library.

Medford Library: 205 S. Central Ave., 774-8689

  • Teens are invited to write poems on hearts cut from red paper through Feb. 14. The poems will be displayed in the library.
  • Voices of the Valley, a poetry writing workshop with Lawson Inada, will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, in the Adams Community Meeting Room. The workshop is free. Call 774-6443 to register.

Rogue River Library: 412 E. Main St., 864-8850

Enter an original poem or a copy of your favorite poem in a drawing for gift certificates to a local bookstore. The certificates will be provided by the Friends of the Rogue River Library, and one prize will be given in three age group categories, including 12 and younger, 13 to 18 and adult. All of the submitted poems will be displayed through February at the library.

Ruch Library: 7919 Highway 238, 878-2270

  • Children's storytimes will feature poetry.
  • Children are invited to write poems and draw illustrations. To participate, forms may be picked up at the library and returned by the end of February. The poems will be displayed in the library.
  • Teens can help create a poem on a magnetic board or bring in an original poem to display.
  • Visitors are invited to participate on a community poem.
  • A family community Poetry Read-In will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16. Bring a favorite poem or share an original poem.
  • A display of "Poetry Reads" will be available through February.

Lawson Inada, Oregon's poet laureate and professor emeritus of Southern Oregon University, will offer a poetry workshop Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Medford Library. - MT file photo