Great visuals, audio and community engagement
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- National Poetry Month will be celebrated on
April 13 from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. with Buffalo’s second
marathon reading of all 1,789 of Emily Dickinson’s poems.
The public are invited to come and read a poem or just relax and
The event is free.
WHO: The event will begin with celebrity readers among
them UB President Satish Tripathi, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown,
former Congresswoman Kathy Hochul, Tony Award-winning actor Stephen
McKinley Henderson of the UB Department of Theatre and Dance and
Reverend Thomas Yorty, Westminster Presbyterian Church.
WHAT: Buffalo’s second marathon reading of Emily
WHEN: Saturday, April 13, all day and into the night, 14
hours of readings
- 8 a.m.: Celebrity readers kick off the
- 1 p.m.: The marathon will break for the 13-member
vocal ensemble “Bolts of Melody” (their name derives
from a Dickinson poem) who will perform five songs set to
Dickinson’s poems, two of which were set to music by the late
composer Leo Smit, a member of the UB music faculty from 1962 to
- As long as it lasts: “Black cake,” a rich,
molasses-based 19-century fruit confection often served by
Dickinson, an accomplished baker.
WHERE: Westminster Presbyterian Church, 724 Delaware
Ave., Buffalo, N.Y.
WHY: “Dickinson helps to remind us as a community
of the many profound things that matter in our lives,”
Cristanne C. Miller, PhD, SUNY Distinguished Professor and chair of
the UB English department says, “through both the art and
music of the poems’ language, and through the themes that
recur, including joy, pain, death, grief, the variety and vitality
of nature, and the particular wonders of each season.”
For someone like George DeTitta, professor of structural biology
at UB who is helping Miller organize this marathon reading, reading
Dickinson is an earnest and sober pursuit that reflects the themes
HOW: The poems will be read in the order in which they
are published in “The Poems of Emily Dickinson,” edited
by Ralph W. Franklin. Talking Leaves bookstore will be lending
copies of the book to readers.
The reading is presented by the University at Buffalo Department
of English, Just Buffalo Literary Center and community volunteers.
It is coordinated by Miller, a noted Dickinson scholar.
ON SITE CONTACT: Cristanne Miller, 716-880-5017
“UB gears up for 14-hour-long marathon reading of Emily
Dickinson’s poems during National Poetry Month”