By: WILLIAM SORENSEN
On Feb. 18, a panel of judges will be approving poetry for public display in the D.C Metro area on the University of Mary Washington’s campus.
The judging will take place on campus in the William Street mansion, home to the creative writing department, and will not be open to the public.
The winning poems will be used to adorn the walls of three of the five new Metro stations being built in the Tysons Corner and Reston areas. Each station will feature a different theme, and each station’s poems will be judged separately.
The Tysons East station will feature poems from past and present Virginia Poets Laureate, all of which have already been selected and approved.
The Tysons Central 7 and Tysons West Stations will feature poems from established and emerging Virginia poets respectively.
These last two groups comprise the poems to be reviewed on Friday.
The judges include some names that UMW students may recognize, such as Professor Claudia Emerson, former Va. Poet Laureate, as well as former Va. Poet Laureate Carolyn Kreiter-Foronda and current Poet Laureate Kelly Cherry.
The latter are both Mary Washington alumni.
The other judges include Peggy Baggett from the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Ron Smith from St. Christopher’s School in Richmond, Shonda Buchanan from Hampton University, and Lucinda Roy from Virginia Tech.
According to the website of The Public Art Project, the organization seeks to promote visual art and literature through its integration into the designs of new commuter settings intended to extend the size of the existing D.C. Metro system.
It is being co-sponsored by both the Poetry Society of Virginia and the Washington Metropolitan Area Authority Art in Transit Program.