Clayton State University Associate Professor of English Dr. Brigitte Byrd (the University’s unofficial poet laureate) recently took four of her poetry students to the Southern Literary Festival 2012, which was hosted by Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn.
Byrd (Fayetteville) entered poetry work by the four students; Leigh Maxwell (Atlanta), Jasmine Cason (Jonesboro), Zuri Espinoza (Forest Park) and Sebastian Lubbers (Lakeland, Fla.) to the Literary Festival’s contest, an event that received submissions from students from 36 different Southern schools -- from the University of Mississippi and University of Arkansas to Piedmont College and the University of Evansville), among others.
The students and Byrd also attended readings, talks, and workshops for three days as well as the keynote dinner with speaker Tina Howe, and a production of Howe’s play Pride’s Crossing, followed by a talkback.
Byrd, who has authored three books of poetry, also had the opportunity to teach a poetry workshop at the event.
“It was my first time taking students to a conference, and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience,” she says. “It was the first conference for my four students, and I believe that they enjoyed being a part of this literary event very much. They all were excellent ambassadors for our school!”