Writer Rick Kempa is Mesa Verde’s next artist-in-residence

Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018 1:39 PM

The Journal

Rick Kempa, a poet and essayist from Rock Springs, Wyoming, will be Mesa Verde National Park’s artist-in-residence from Sept. 3-15.

He has served as artist-in-residence at Grand Canyon National Park twice, and at Hubbell Trading Post in Ganado, Arizona, according to a press release from Mesa Verde public information officer Cristy Brown.

His most recent books are the anthologies “Going Down Grand: Poems from the Canyon” and “On Foot: Grand Canyon Backpacking Stories,” and the poetry collection “Ten Thousand Voices.” He recently retired after teaching at Western Wyoming College and is spending more time writing, Brown said.

Kempa plans two free programs, in the park and at the Mancos Public Library.

Saturday workshop: Kempa will offer a writing workshop at Mancos Public Library on Sept. 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The workshop, he says, “is an open invitation for writers to spend a morning together writing, walking, conversing and inspiring each other.” Participants should “bring whatever tools for seeing and writing that you may have: a pocket notebook, binoculars, perhaps even a magnifying glass.” They are also welcome to bring a sampling of recent work to share. Space is limited to 15 people. To reserve a place, call Teri at 970-529-4642.

Evening presentation: On Sept. 13, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., Kempa will share stories, poems and pictures from his backpacking trips on the Colorado Plateau and from his time at Mesa Verde. It will be at the Far View Lodge and is open to the public.