MCC to Host IV La Guagua Poetry Festival in-Person
Middlesex Community College is thrilled to announce the IV La Guagua Poetry Festival. The festival will take place on Friday, May 5 and Saturday, May 6 at the college’s Richard and Nancy Donahue and Family Academic Arts Center in Lowell. The theme of this year’s festival is translation with an emphasis on immigration and social justice.
“Finally, we are able to return La Guagua Poetry Festival for the first time since the start of COVID,” said Willy Ramirez, MCC professor and founder of the festival and one of the organizers. “As in previous years, we plan the festival with the intention to offer the members of the college and its surrounding communities, as well as the invited poets themselves, a unique opportunity to experience the power of poetry and translation. We are just thrilled and grateful for this opportunity to come together once again.”
La Guagua showcases renowned and award-winning poets, translators, publishers, and editors from around the world. The festival offers a unique opportunity for people to reflect on the themes of translation, immigration, and social justice through an exploration of the literary works presented at the festival in its original language, as well as in translation.
The audience will enjoy a live singing performance by Audy Ramirez, keynote presentations by poet and translator Vanita Ruth and Pulitzer Prize-Winning poet Vijay Seshadri, multilingual reading panels, conversations about literary translation, and an interactive lunch on Saturday with featured poets.
Attendees will also receive a hard copy of the La Guagua Poetry Anthology: The Path Belongs to Us including the works presented at the festival by visiting poets and featuring works in Arabic, English, Filipino, French, German, Haitian Creole, Hindi, Romanian, Russian, Sanskrit, Spanish, Swedish, Vietnamese, and Urdu. Students who are registered for the IDS Weekend 1-credit course will also go on a historical tour of Lowell and attend creative writing workshops conducted by the visiting poets and translators.
This year’s poets include Vijay Seshadri, Rhina P. Espaillat, Ruth Vanita, Marc Vincenz, Philip Nikolayev, Katia Kapovich, Vivek Narayanan, Ben Mazer, Doug Holder, Fadir Delgado, Christina Liu, Amel Bachiri, Eva Salzman, Salvador Madrid, Carlos Villalobo, Raquel López Suárez, Yousif ALhabob, Azad Iskander, Jose Edmundo Ocampo Reyes, Michèle Voltaire Marcelin, Claudio Sanchez, Ariadna Muñoz, Cayleigh Baillargeon, Lexi Balevre, and Ramon de Jesús Duval.
The event is free and open to the public, including lunch on Saturday. On Friday, May 5, the event will include a reception, keynote presentation, and a poetry reading by invited poets between 5 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Saturday’s events will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and include a keynote presentation.
MCC’s Academic Arts Center is located at 240 Central Street in Lowell. With parking not available on site, the nearest public parking facility is the Early Garage on 135 Middlesex St.