- This event has passed.
Aaron Vessup Virtual Point Arena Third Thursday Poetry
January 20, 2022 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Point Arena Third Thursday Poetry presents a virtual Third Thursday Zoom Poetry reading at 7pm on Thursday, January 20, 2022. This month features Poet Aaron Vessup, with open mic to follow.
The second oldest with fifteen siblings, Aaron Anthony Vessup, was born in Los Angeles, California in a simple house on Vernon Avenue, In 1957, writing the “Myna Bird” poem, he earned California Chaparral of Poets recognition when a student at Mark Twain Elementary School. Later a student at Thomas Edison Jr. High, in Los Angeles, Aaron wrote the “Wyatt Earp” cowboy poem, propelling him into oral speech competitions when the family moved to San Bernardino, California.
Aaron Vessup prevailed as he became the first black American Junior College “Expository” speech co-champion for the state of California. After graduating from SBVC, he became “Oratory” champion for the state of Nebraska. Before graduating from Nebraska Wesleyan University (1970) to become a national oratory finalist that same year. Two years later, while a Grad student at Illinois State University, he presented a Maya Angelou cutting from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, winning the Edward’s gold medal for Oral Interpretation. Subsequently, as a doctoral candidate at the University of Pittsburgh, he successfully coached two Bi-Centennial Speech finalists.
His long trail of coaching literature lovers came to a brief end, upon retiring from the teaching role at Elgin Community College in Illinois (2002). He received Professor Emeritus honors. Founder of Cultures In Focus, a community self-help collaborative, global travel to over thirty-five countries has kept him hopping.
In 2002, the Australian Poetry Society awarded Aaron Vessup the Bronze Peace Medallion for writing a short poem, “Peace: An Echoing Shadow.” As a member of the International Platform Association, he received the Silver Bowl top poetry prize for the baseball poem “Home Run”. As a lifetime member of the World Congress of Poets, Aaron Vessup, performed with this group in Egypt, Korea, Israel, Mexico, and Taipei. In 2001, the Academy of Arts and Literature awarded him the Honorary Doctorate of Letters in Literature. In 2002, he received the Miriam Lindberg Honorable Mention Peace Poetry award for the poem “Writings on the Wall”, in Tel Aviv, Israel. Over the years his poems have been anthologized in Best American Poetry collections.
Moving to China, Aaron worked in three different provinces, where he taught Oral English Communication, Advanced Writing, and Western Culture classes. Besides poetry, essay publications, and televised appearances, Aaron received the Jilin Provincial “Outstanding Foreign Expert” Award.
Books published by Aaron Vessup include: Beyond Cultural Anxieties; Making Cultural Adjustments; Cultural Fusions; and Five poetry collections: Two Swords, One Heart; Mud Notes Singing; Fires of Desire; Songs for Confucius; and Elements of Love. In addition to having participated in several group and solo international Photography Exhibitions, contributing travel essays and photographic work to various magazines for cultural bridge-building remains his passion. Two collections of his photography works are: The Lamp Lighters, and Visual Execution Studies. For five years, this author contributed to the Beijing Review, and English Language Learner’s magazines. Earnshaw books of Shanghai published on April 2017, BLACK IN CHINA, by Aaron Anthony Vessup. This book promises to make the international Best Seller list. On January 2020, Fulton Books of Pennsylvania, released AMERICAN ROBOT, a memoir containing samples of his seminal early verses. Currently this author has several works in progress, and resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. More info at: http://www.culturesinfocus.us
To watch or participate as an open mic reader, please contact Blake More (info below). Third Thursday Poetry Zoom continues to be supported by Poets & Writers, Inc. through a grant it has received from The James Irvine Foundation.