The Terry Plunkett Maine Poetry Festival

On Saturday, April 16th, some of the Binnacle and Araby club members went to Augusta for the annual Terry Plunkett Poetry Festival.  And as soon as we arrived at the University of Maine at Augusta, we lost the car key.

Coach Gerard NeCastro had borrowed one of the University vehicles to drive us down to Augusta.  There were only four of us: Sean, Melissa, Anna, and me.  (We all also went on the trip to Boston as well.)  We alternated sleeping throughout the car ride, since we did have three hours of road time to kill.  But as soon as we parked the car in the UMA parking lot, Coach couldn’t find the key. 

He ushered us inside so that we wouldn’t miss most of the festival.  Still, we worried.  Anna, Melissa, and I went out to the car to help Coach search for the key.  It wasn’t on the seat, under the floor mats, under the car, or even in his pockets.  We searched everyone’s bags, even those that were nowhere near the ignition during the drive.  Still no key.  Resigned, we went inside to listen to the readings, hopeful that we would not end up stuck in Augusta for the night.

I think we all had different favorites throughout the readings.  One of my favorites was the mother/daughter team that both wrote and read sonnets, Marta and Maggie Finch.  The mother had just celebrated her 90th birthday.  Ninety!  To be ninety and still writing poetry is just extraordinary to me.  There were also discussions between the readings, such as the effect of the digital age on poetry and writing.  A panel of poets sat at the front of the room for each discussion.  We also got to hear the Poet Laureate of Maine, Wes McNair, read.  Coach and I asked him to come and read at UMM in the fall.  (He said yes, as long as we paid for gas.) 

Near the end of our stay at the poetry festival, we were all asked to read our own poetry before the open mic began, since we had traveled from Machias.  I was pretty nervous, to say the least.  Once we had finished reading, we got to listen to a few of the open mic readers before we had to leave.


Students at the UMA Terry Plunkett Maine Poetry Festival

Melissa, Anna, Jordan (me), and Sean just before leaving the poetry festival.


As for the lost key situation… Bob Farris drove from Machias to Augusta to give us the spare key for the car.  Thank you, Bob!

 - Jordan Gilletti '12


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