NOTE: The Lovell Street entrance to the Central Library parking lot will be closed periodically due to construction. The Rose Street (west) entrance will remain open.

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Autumn Colors

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Date, Location

    An Evening of Poetry & Music

    Friends of Poetry present a night of poetry and music inspired by the season, featuring poets Scott Bade, Hedy Habra, Denise Miller, Janet Ruth Heller, John P. Abbott, and Marianne Houston, with musicians John C. Griffin, who will perform his musical setting of William Carlos Williams’ poem “This is Just to Say” for soprano voice and piano; Josh Holcomb (viola) and Zachary Boyt (cello); and John P. Abbott (guitar).

    The authors will be available to autograph their books. Event sponsored by Friends of Poetry.

    This event is free and open to the public.

    About the Authors


    Marianne Novak Houston

    Marianne Novak Houston holds a Masters degree in Religious Studies from Lumen Vitae Institute in Belgium, an affiliate of the Gregorian University in Rome. For 18 years, she has worked with Dr. Parker J. Palmer and associates and played a role in designing the international Courage to Teach and Courage to Lead programs and establishing The Center for Courage and Renewal in Seattle. She facilitates retreats in the US and abroad. Marianne’s most recent publication is a collection of poetry called On the Street. Each poem tells the story of one of our marginalized and poor friends here and elsewhere. All the profits from this book have supported Ministry with Community, a local daytime shelter for the homeless.


    Hedy Habra

    Hedy Habra was born in Egypt and is of Lebanese origin. She is the author of the poetry collection Tea in Heliopolis; the short story collection Flying Carpets, which is the 2013 Winner of the Arab American Book Award’s Honorable Mention in Fiction; and a book of literary criticism, Mundos alternos y artísticos en Vargas Llosa. She has an M.A. and an M.F.A. in English and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Spanish literature, all from Western Michigan University. Her multilingual work appears in numerous journals and anthologies, including Nimrod, The New York Quarterly, Drunken Boat, Cutthroat, Bitter Oleander, Diode, Puerto del Sol, Cider Press Review, Poet Lore, Dinarzad’s Children 2, and Inclined to Speak. (


    Janet Ruth Heller

    Janet Ruth Heller is president of the Michigan College English Association. She has a Ph.D. in English from the University of Chicago. Anaphora Literary Press published her poetry book Folk Concert: Changing Times (2012). Finishing Line Press published her poetry book Traffic Stop (2011). Her scholarly book, Coleridge, Lamb, Hazlitt, and the Reader of Drama, was published by the University of Missouri Press (1990). Exodus, a poetry book, is forthcoming from WordTech Communications in January, 2014. Her book about bullying for children, How the Moon Regained Her Shape (Sylvan Dell, 2006), has won four national awards. (  


    Denise Miller

    Denise Miller is a Kalamazoo Valley Community College instructor, artist, poet, and community activist. She received a B.F.A. from Bowling Green State University in Creative Writing in 1992 and an M.A. from Central Michigan University in 1995. Her work has also been funded by an Emerging Artists Grant from the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo and the Gilmore Foundation. Miller is the co-owner of Fire, a cultural lounge in Kalamazoo featuring visual art, spoken word, live music and Tai Chi. As an artist and poet Miller believes that art should be by the people, for the people and of the people. She believes that art can be transformative and that art can change the status quo. It is, in her mind, the artist’s job to tell the truth no matter what the cost. Her work has appeared in American Ghost: Poets on Life After Industry, Terror and Transformation: an anthology of sexual violence and healing, Girl Interrupted, The Dunes Review and the African American Review.


    Scott Bade

    Scott Bade lives in Kalamazoo, MI with his wife Lori and sons, August and Stuart. Scott is pursuing a doctoral degree at Western Michigan University. He is a former poetry editor for Third Coast Magazine and editorial assistant at New Issues Press. His poems have appeared in Fugue, Parthenon West Review, H_NGM_N, and others.