Arapahoe Community College holds 'Poems for Malala' reading

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The extraordinary 16-year-old Pakistani student, Malala Yousafzai, has captured the imagination of millions worldwide, after an assassination attempt on Oct. 9, 2012, when she was shot in the head and neck.

Following expert medical care in Great Britain, she has continued to advocate for education for girls, spoken at the UN on her 16th birthday, been featured on the Cover of Time magazine as one of “The Most Influential People in the World” and been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

The winner of Pakistan's first National Youth Peace Prize, who continues to advocate for worldwide access to education, has been honored by an anthology, “Poems for Malala,” published by FutureCycle Press. Poets from throughout the world have contributed to it, including Kathryn Winograd and Chris Ransick of Arapahoe Community College in Littleton.

ACC's Writers Studio will host a “Poems for Malala” evening from 6 to 8 p.m. on Nov. 8 in the Colorado Gallery of the Arts. Poet and anthology editor Joseph Hutchison will open the program and describe how the anthology came about. He, Winograd and others will read from the anthology, which includes poems by such well-known writers as Linda Hogan, Jane Hirshfield and Ellen Bass.

A suggested $5 donation from audience members will go to the Malala Fund, as will proceeds from book sales. (Order from Amazon.)

Winograd said she was reeling from the death of Jessica Ridgeway in Wheat Ridge when Malala was shot and her poem, “etymology of girl,” reflects her concern. It concludes:

“malala: all-honey or grief-stricken, and you, dear dead girl

of the grass. Fetching it to me with full hands, God beholds

blossoms, pearls, inner sea fold of petal, flower flesh —

what else did men name you centuries centuries”

A representative of the Denver-based not-for-profit, Woman's Development Association, will talk about its work in Lahore, Pakistan, with indigent, illiterate women. A video will be played of a talk by member Josna Azim, who comes from a region near Malala's. She is leaving Nov. 1, so her talk was recorded and her son, Asher Azim, will introduce it

Area high school poets have been invited to contribute work and read at the event, Winograd said.