Monday, March 31, 2008

Poet to reveal rural side of life - News

Here is the first time (I think) I've made the newspaper since birth. Still catching up on my several months long hiatus. Enjoy the day!

Poet to reveal rural side of life - News

Poet to reveal rural side of life
By: Ellen Rogers
Issue date: 11/28/07 Section: News

Grand Ledge senior Axie Barclay will give students a glimpse into the darker side of rural life Thursday when she presents the "XY Rated: Fiction and Poetry Collection."

The reading is a culmination of honor students' senior capstone projects in creative writing. It will take place from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday in Charles V. Park Library's Baber Room.

Barclay will read her own works of poetry and fiction, which she spent more than a semester working on.

"It was a challenge, but it was really fun working on it," she said. "I really enjoyed the camaraderie with my professor. It was a neat experience."

Allegra Blake, assistant English language and literature professor, worked with Barclay on the project.

Blake said Barclay was inquisitive and always wanted to read more, even after being given a huge reading list for the project.

"She just gobbled up information," Blake said. "I could see she was taking certain things away from the authors that she was reading."

Blake said Barclay has the poise of someone who sounds much older than she is. Barclay's writing is gritty and shows people behaving badly and things everyone struggles with, especially students who have grown up on farms and worked with animals, she said.

"She's like a Midwestern Flannery O'Connor," she said. "Her writing is dark, but also very funny. It shows a lot of reflection."

Barclay writes about the realistic side of rural life and the experiences of college-aged people. Barclay was home-schooled and calls herself a "farm kid."

"It might be interesting even if you're not interested in poetry or fiction," Barclay said.

Blake said the reading is worth attending. "It's nice to see someone with so much talent," she said. "Axie is a really good writer, and she continually surprised me."

The event is free.