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La Sociedad para las Artes to present weekend poetry events

Poet Thomas Sayers Ellis will read from his work at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 23, in Hardman Hall Room 106 and head a writing workshop at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 24, in Room 229 of the English Building. The events are sponsored by New Mexico State University's La Sociedad para Las Artes.


Of Ellis' first poetry collection, "The Maverick Room," poet Cate Marvin wrote in the poetry journal, "Ploughshares," that "Ellis works the page the way his musical subjects - crooners, masters of funk, D.C.-based Go-Go bands - work a room: with rhythm, sass, and self-deprecating wit. The sonic effects of these poems duplicate the experience of listening to live music." The 2006 John C. Zacharis First Book Award was awarded to Ellis for "Maverick Room."

Ellis is a creative writing assistant professor at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y., and a faculty member of the Lesley University low-residency Master of Fine Arts program in Cambridge, Mass. His work has appeared in many journals and anthologies, including "Poetry," "Grand Street," "Tin House," "Ploughshares" and "The Best American Poetry" in 1997 and 2001.

Fiction writer Evan Lavender-Smith will open for Ellis during the reading.

Lavender-Smith is an NMSU graduate and has had work published in numerous literary journals, including "Colorado Review" and "Denver Quarterly." He also edits Noemi Press, a Las Cruces nonprofit press dedicated to emerging artists and writers.

For more information about these events call (505) 646-2027.