Riverwalk to feature two poets at Sunday reading

Published 10:07 pm Saturday, May 25, 2013

The folks at Riverwalk Gallery and Arts Center may have the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Poets Shelby Stephenson and Marty Silverthorne will hold a poetry reading from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. this Sunday.
Stephenson and Silverthorne have been friends for 30 years and influenced each other’s work. The pair will read together at Sunday’s reading.
Riverwalk billed them as “country boys who have turned their life experiences into words that sing like the old traditional songs.”
Stephenson was editor of “Pembroke Magazine” from 1979 until his retirement as professor emeritus from UNC-Pembroke in 2010. His most recent publication is “Play My Music Anyhow” from Finishing Line Press, 2013.
His “Family Matters:  Homage to July, the Slave Girl” won the 2008 Bellday Poetry Prize and the 2009 Oscar Arnold Young Award from the Poetry Council of North Carolina. His “Maytle’s World,” a tribute to his mother, is forthcoming from Evening Street Press.
Silverthorne’s publications include: “Dry Skin Messiah,” “Pot Liquor Promises,” ”No Welfare, No Pension Plan” and “Rewinding at 40.”
His poems have appeared in numerous journals including “Tar River Poetry,” “North Carolina Literary Review,” “St. Andrews Review” and “Pembroke.” His work has been anthologized in “…and love…,” “The Sounds of Poets Cooking” and “Words and Witness: A Hundred Years of North Carolina Poetry.”
Silverthorne received several Regional Arts Grants from the North Carolina Arts Council and was a NC Arts Council fellow in 2012.
Organizer Jayne Wall is a fan and a friend of the pair.
“I don’t know what to say about these guys except that they’re giants of their genre. Don’t miss these fellows. They’re the real North Carolina deal,” she said.
Stephenson’s and Silverthorne’s southern charm with words have a way of drawing anyone in.
“They truly have their voices deep into our Eastern North Carolina soil,” Wall said. “They will move you and touch you and make you see your childhood in an aura that belonged to it all along.”
Riverwalk Gallery and Arts Center is located at 139 West Main Street in downtown Washington. For more information about Sunday’s poetry reading, call 974-0400.