Poetic rhetoric | Signpost


Tacey Atsitty, recipient of several awards including the Truman Capote Creative Writing Fellowship, the Carson-Browning Poetry Prize and the Morning Star Creative Writing Award, spoke at the International Poetry Night on November 17.

The poetry reading was part of International Education Week where student poets performed pieces they chose or created themselves, followed by a presentation of readings by Atsitty.

Tracey M. Atsitty reading her book “Rain Scald” in front of a projection of a crackling fire. The fire was specially chosen for Poetry Night to create a calm environment and bring the poetry read that night to life. (Kennedy Robins / The Signpost) Photo credit: Kennedy Robins

“I am Tsenahabilnii (sleeping people) born to the Ta’neazahnii (entangled people),” Atsitty said.

A member of the Navajo Nation, she lived and grew up in Cove, Arizona, and Kirtland, New Mexico. She attended BYU and the Institute for American Indian Arts for her BA before moving to Cornell University for an MFA in Creative Writing.

Her first book, Rain Scald, published by the University of New Mexico Press, is a collection of her poetry and was the source of the poems she shared.

Charles Oppong is a student at Weber State who read his original poem From the Horse’s Own Eyes.

“I wrote it about 2 years ago using the main language of Ghana and then in English,” Oppong said.

The event was offered through the International Student Center and moderated by Billie Atsitty De Paiva, who was also the guest poet’s younger sister.

“She did a wonderful thing for her little sister,” said Atsitty De Paiva.

The event was one of many events held throughout the past week as part of International Education Week. The week included different events each day that students could participate in through the International Center for Students and Scholars.

Tracey M Atsitty, author of the book of poetry known as
Tracey M Atsitty, author of the poetry book known as “Rain Scald”, reading her book at a poetry night. (Kennedy Robins / The Signpost) Photo credit: Kennedy Robins

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