The Poetry and Literature Committee of Sunland-Tujunga is honoring local resident Elsa S. Frausto as the next poet laureate. The McGroarty Arts Center will host the “Passing of the Laurels” at 3 p.m. on April 27 when Frausto will be inducted as poet laureate and begin serving her two-year term of promoting poetry and language arts in the foothills community. The ceremony and reception are free to the public and all are encouraged to attend.
“Since moving to Tujunga in 1990, I’ve seen interest in the arts, especially poetry and writing, grow in this community,” said Frausto. “The monthly readings at Bolton Hall, the ever-growing list of classes at the (McGroarty) Arts Center and The Voice of the Village, which publishes the work of local poets, are fine examples.”
When asked about the goals of her term, she said, “I would like to include the many immigrant communities that make up the larger one of Sunland-Tujunga promoting Armenian, Korean and Spanish poetry and writing (original and in translation) in readings and publication. I believe that poetry unites people and voices while encouraging self expression and freedom.”
The poet laureate program was established in 1999 to not only honor former resident and U.S. congressman John Steven McGroarty who served as the California state poet laureate from 1933-44 but to provide a public service to groups and organizations.
Dorothy Skiles was inducted in 2012 and will be completing her term this month.
“It’s been an honor to write and deliver poems for the community,” she said. “The Memorial Day Remembrance in Sunland Park and the Bolton Hall Centennial Celebration last year were particularly memorable.”
Skiles was very active during her term, scheduling events, teaching workshops and attending readings almost weekly.
When asked her feelings about passing her laurel crown to Frausto, Skiles said, “I’m delighted Elsa has been selected. She’s a fine writer. Her poetry reflects her rich and diverse experiences both in the USA and abroad. Elsa’s poems depict the common joys and struggles of this life. Subtlety, she draws me into her poems with her compelling imagery, and allows me to come to my own conclusions.”
For more information, see villagepoets.blogspot.com.
The McGroarty Arts Center is located at 7570 McGroarty Terrace in Tujunga.
Written by Joe DE CENZO