Student Poetry Funds Flood Relief

Nick Hytrek reports for the Sioux City Journal that a local class of Upward Bound students transformed their two-half-days program into an opportunity to generate money for relief after the recent Missouri River flooding. They have written a book, Submerged: A River of Poems by the Students of Trio Upward Bound Program at Western Iowa Tech Community College. We liked the article, but it would have been nice to hear from Kwame Alexander, who spearheaded the program that inspired the students and who arranged for publication. That quibble aside, we give a big round of applause to these students who, just now beginning to create, have already also begun leveraging art into action. On this, or nation’s birthday, we hold them up as American exemplars. Good luck with their book sales.

About poetsguide

A former altar boy and a former U.S. Army interrogator, respectively, John F. Buckley and Martin Ott were born and raised in Michigan, meeting each other at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor before separately migrating to California in the early 1990s to attend graduate schools, their friendship evolving into a writing collaboration – what they refer to as poetic volleyball. They both currently live in Southern California, John with his wife, Martin with his wife and two children. John teaches English composition at several local colleges, while Martin works as a marketing strategist for a global company. John still affects a strange piety; Martin still finds himself asking a lot of questions. Individually and together, their writing has appeared in over 150 periodicals and anthologies, garnering three Pushcart Prize nominations for Martin’s poems “India Ivy” and “When Bridges Fall” (available in his collection Children of Interrogation, which has been a finalist or semi-finalist in eighteen poetry prizes) and John’s “Poem for Christy’s Daughter” (available in his collection Kinks in the Hose). Martin has also optioned three screenplays. His chapbook Misery Loves was published on Red Dancefloor Press. John’s chapbook Breach Birth was published on Propaganda Press.
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