Poetry on the Plaza focuses on love poems for Valentine's Day

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With Valentine’s Day and spring around the corner, students and locals congregated Wednesday afternoon to listen to a number of speakers recite love poems.

Poetry on the Plaza, hosted by the Harry Ransom Center, occurs about once a month during the academic year, and each event features a number of poets who recite poems, some dealing with the current season or holiday.

Greg Curtis, humanities coordinator for the Ransom Center, has organized Poetry on the Plaza for the past four years. Curtis said Poetry on the Plaza attempts to increase awareness of the Harry Ransom Center and its impact on campus. Often, the theme of the poetry reading is associated with an exhibit present in the Ransom Center, he said.

The first speaker Wednesday was Dr. Larry Carver, director of the liberal arts honors program, recited a poem from John Milton and ended with “Love Calls Us to the Things of This World,” by Richard Wilbur.

Shamala Gallagher, a poet from the Michener Center for Writers, recited a few of her own pieces that focused on unrequited love and love for oneself.

Gallagher said she was excited to participate and will read at the next Poetry on the Plaza, which will take place Feb. 22.

History professor H.W. Brands spoke last, reciting “The Wreck of Hesperus” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and ending with “The Highwayman” by Alfred Noyes.

The theme of the next Poetry on the Plaze in April will be the King James Bible, which will correspond to the King James Bible exhibit that will be on display at the Harry Ransom Center Feb. 28 - July 29.

Advertising junior Megan Vo attended the poetry reading. She said the readers were great, and she will definitely attend future readings.