Western Heritage Award winner to read his poetry at Northwestern April 11

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Western Heritage Award winner to read his poetry at Northwestern April 11

March 29, 2011

Ken Hada, author of two books of poems, will be reading from his books during a Poetry Reading at Northwestern Oklahoma State University on Monday, April 11, at 7 p.m. in the J.W. Martin Library. The program is sponsored by the Department of English, Foreign Language and Humanities and is free and open to the public.

His latest book, “Spare Parts,” has been chosen as the 2011 recipient of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum’s Western Heritage Award in the Outstanding Poetry Book category. On April 16 at a black-tie banquet at the museum, he will be receiving a “Wrangler,” an impressive bronze sculpture of a cowboy on horseback.

“Spare Parts” is a book of poems, which act as spare parts in themselves, and is touted as “the making of one smooth-running, powerful engine of ingenuity,” said Diane Glancy, renowned author.

His first book, “The Way of the Wind,” tells of northwest Oklahoma and the Ozarks of north Arkansas. Texas poet laureate Larry Thomas said of this book, “if the timeless red dirt of Okahoma could speak, this book would be its forceful utterance.”

Hada’s critical work has appeared in several publications including The Explicator; Southwestern American Literature; Oklahoma English Journal; American Indian Culture and Research Journal and many more. More than 30 of his poems have appeared in Travelin’ Music: A Poetic Tribute to Woody Guthrie; Crosstimbers: A Multicultural, Interdisciplinary Journal; California Quarterly; Night Whispers: A Poetry & Prose Anthology; Oklahoma Today; Poesia; Kansas City Voices; Red River Review; Flint Hills Review and other journals and reviews.

Hada, whose grandmother and several relatives live in the Alva area, claims northwest Oklahoma and the Ozarks as his home. His family homesteaded northwest of Alva in 1899, and his dad attended the Greenleaf School (one-room) northwest of Alva.

He currently is a tenured associate professor in the Department of Languages at East Central University in Ada and since 2006 has been the director of the annual Scissortail Creative Writing Festival there.

For more information about the poetry reading at Northwestern, please contact the department’s chair, Dr. James Bell, at (580) 327-8469 or jibell@nwosu.edu.