By Daniel Whirlow, senior English major
LATROBE, PA – Submissions are open for the Joe O’Connor Poetry Series, an initiative to discover and publish the work of local poets sponsored by Eulalia Books, a poetry-in-translation publisher housed at Saint Vincent College.
Eulalia Books will accept submissions of poetry chapbook manuscripts (20-35 pages) from any former student of Saint Vincent College or resident of Westmoreland County whose poetry has not yet appeared in book form. Any non-resident who still identifies as a Westmoreland County poet is also eligible.
Poets who wish to submit a manuscript should email firstname.lastname@example.org. A complete submission will include the poet’s name, address and a copy of the chapbook manuscript. Poets should also note whether they are alumni of Saint Vincent College and their graduation year. The deadline to submit is Aug. 1, 2021.
Named after poet and 1965 Saint Vincent College alumnus Joe O’Connor, the series spotlights the writing of members of our community whose poetry reflects serious commitment and merits broader recognition. The inaugural book of the series was O’Connor’s “Why Poetry?,” published in 2019.
O’Connor was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1941. Growing up, his mother said, “his shoes were full of sand and his head full of cement – he couldn’t sit still and nothing could get in.” A lifetime emptied the sand and cracked the cement. With retirement, O’Connor took up, with youthful enthusiasm, his lifelong project of letting as much light as possible get into and out of the crack in the cement. He attended Saint Vincent College, graduating in 1965 with a bachelor’s degree in history. Throughout his life, O’Connor continued writing poetry, although he did not publish his work. O’Connor passed away in April 2020 from COVID-19.
Eulalia Books is a part of Saint Vincent College’s literary translation program, a conjunctive effort of the English and Modern Language departments. Its mission is to publish modern and contemporary poets who do not yet have a collection translated into English.
To learn more about upcoming publications, events and more from Eulalia Books, visit its website at www.eulaliabooks.com, follow on Instagram (@Eulalia.Books) and Twitter (@EulaliaBooks) and “like” on Facebook at Eulalia Books.
PHOTO: The late Joe O’Connor, C’65