Emily Dickinson marathon at library April 25

Emily Dickinson poetry marathon at library April 25

A word is dead, when it is said
Some say --
I say it just begins to live
That day

-- Emily Dickinson, Poem #278

On Friday, April 25, the English Department will host a marathon reading of Emily Dickinson's poetry to celebrate National Poetry Month. Everyone's invited to help bring the words of the poet to life.

The goal: To read aloud all of Dickinson's poems -- from #1 to #1,789 -- between 8 a.m. and midnight. Readers can come and go as they please; stay for a half-hour or make a day of it. Participants will sit in a circle and take turns reading; listeners are welcome too.

Nearly 100 readers are expected to take a turn with a poem, and you can join them. Even Father Dease has signed up (10 -10:30 a.m.). So has St. Paul's poet laureate, Carol Connelly (from 2:30 until dinnertime). Even if you're pretty busy, remember: Dickinson's poems are very short, so reading one could take less than a minute!

Readers will use Ralph W. Franklin's The Poems of Emily Dickinson. If you don't have access to this version, loaner copies have been generously provided by Common Good Books, or you can purchase your own at the store, 165 N. Western Ave., St. Paul.

The marathon will take place from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the O'Shaughnessy Room of O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library Center, then move to the Koch Commons Fireside Room from 8 p.m. on.

If you'd like to join the readers and schedule a time, contact Dr. Erika Scheurer in the English Department, (651) 962-5669. Or, if that isn't practical, just drop by when you can.