Thursday, September 26, 2019

Laura Grace Weldon Is Named Ohio Poet of the Year

Laura Grace Weldon has been named Ohio Poet of the Year 2019 by the Ohio Poetry Day Association on the strength of her second collection, Blackbird (Grayson Books, 2019). Topics in that collection include coyotes, cows, pay disparity, rare disorders, weeping icons, and astrophysics. A journal review called her poems “experiential works of luminous simplicity.”

Laura grew up a voracious reader thanks to public libraries and discovered a love of poetry early. She incorporated poetry everywhere her career took her. She developed a poetry project at a nursing home culminating in a book of poems collaboratively written with residents, shared poetry with support groups she facilitated as a social worker, used poems to get across principles while teaching nonviolence workshops, and now offers poems as prompts for her memoir students. But she didn’t write her own poems until she was in her late 40’s, brought to it by what she calls “sideways procrastination.”

Ten years later over 140 of her poems have been published in journals and anthologies,  Thanks to Lit Youngstown, some of her poems have been interpreted into sculpture, video, and painting, with one even stamped into a public sidewalk. In addition to Blackbird she’s published an earlier collection, Tending (Aldrich Press, 2013) as well as a handbook of natural learning titled Free Range Learning (Hohm Press, 2010).  

Laura lives on a small farm in Medina County’s Litchfield Township. She works as an editor and particularly enjoys teaching community-based classes in memoir, poetry, and creativity. She is still a voracious reader, as her often-maxed out library card can attest. 

Find Laura on Facebook, Twitter, and at

Ohio Poetry Day 2019 Events

Troy Hayner Cultural Center, 301 W Main Street, Troy, OH 45373

Friday Evening, October 18 7:00 p.m.
Refreshments, Evening Workshops & Overnight Contests

Saturday Morning, October 19:
9:00 a.m. registration
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Evan Lodge Memorial Poetry Workshop $1.50 charge, free to students

Saturday Noon, October 19 Lunch
Box lunch must be pre-ordered.

Contact Amy Zook to register and order lunch.
Amy Jo Zook
3520 State Rte. 56
Mechanicsburg, OH 43044

Saturday Afternoon, October 19, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Readings by the Ohio Poet of the Year
& Contest Winners

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