Susan Schmidt, "Let Go or Hold Fast"

Poet Susan Schmidt, Let Go or Hold Fast

Tuesday, July 2, 6pm

"In 'Tyranny of Small Decisions,' I applaud your tackling such an important political subject. The language, imagery, line breaks & shape of the poem are stellar. Your instincts are on target. It’s so heartbreakingly true. Hard-core evidence cannot be disputed. Trust your reader to read deeply. You know how to write a poem, strong and accessible."
~Joe Bathanti

"...a rare and engaged page-turner, a journey of passion, endurance, and self-perseverance."
~ Phillip Shabazz

Susan Schmidt’s Let Go or Hold Fast, Beaufort Poems won the Gail O’Day Poetry Prize from Library Partners Press. As sailboat captain, master gardener, and naturalist, in Let Go or Hold Fast, Susan Schmidt celebrates neighbors—herons, egrets, owls, dolphins, manatees, sharks, butterflies, ants, bees, possums, snakes, and bears. As she swims, paddles, rows, and sails in Beaufort, Susan witnesses coastal diversity and resilience, threatened by sea level rise and development. Poems comment on the new bridge, potholes, hanging laundry, and Hurricane Florence. As developmental editor, Susan Schmidt polishes book manuscripts for publication, listed among Top Ten Editors in New England. She leads a local writers’ critique group. She has had a Coast Guard Captain’s license thirty-six years. She has been a professor of environmental decision-making and literature, and a government science-policy analyst. Her poems appear in Literary Trails of Eastern North Carolina, won the Guy Owen Poetry Prize, and were finalists for the James Applewhite Prize. She wrote Landfall Along the Chesapeake, In the Wake of Captain John Smith, an ecological history and boat adventure; Song of Moving Water, a novel about a young woman who opposes a dam; and Salt Runs in My Blood, poems about fish, birds, playing in boats, and walking long trails.

 

As developmental editor, Susan Schmidt polishes science and history books, novels, and memoirs—listed among Top Ten Editors in New England. She has been a professor of literature and environmental decision-making, and a government science-policy analyst. She has had a Coast Guard Captain’s license thirty-six years. She wrote the grant to buy Carrot Island and Bird Shoal in Beaufort for the NC Estuarine Reserve. She has a doctorate in American literature and Masters degrees in Environmental Sciences and British lit. She read literature at Oxford and, postdoc, studied bioethics and environmental mediation. To witness natural diversity, she walked the Camino de Santiago, Cornwall Coastal Path, Scottish Highlands, Ireland’s Ring of Kerry, Snowdonia in Wales, Guernsey and Brittany, and the Appalachian Trail. She surveyed birds in Kenya, Ecuador, Belize, and Iceland; paddled Alaska’s Prince William Sound and New Zealand’s Milford Sound; and delivered sailboats to the West Indies. Her homeplace is the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia, and her homeport is Beaufort, North Carolina, where she walks beaches with her Boykin Spaniel. Her poems won the Guy Owen Poetry Prize and appear in Literary Trails of Eastern North Carolina; two poems were finalists for the James Applewhite Prize. She wrote Landfall Along the Chesapeake, In the Wake of Captain John Smith, an ecological history and boat adventure; Song of Moving Water, a novel about a young woman who organizes her community to oppose a dam; and Salt Runs in My Blood, poems about fish, birds, playing in boats, and walking long trails.

Event date: 
Tuesday, July 2, 2019 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
304 S. Elm St.
Greensboro, NC 27401