Holyoke – The Care Center, an educational and cultural resource center for young mothers, invites the community to celebrate the release of Nautilus II, a journal of students’ writing and art, at a reading on Friday, June 21, at the Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley. The event begins at 10:30 a.m. and is free and open to the public.
Each year, a team of student editors works in conjunction with staff editors to select the writing and visual art that best represents The Care Center’s high standards and its students’ singular perspectives. Students edit work, write supporting materials, and collaborate with designer Craig Malone to bring the volume together.
Of this year’s edition, Ivelisse Rodriguez, author of Love War Stories, a 2019 PEN/Faulkner finalist, says, “Charting the fluctuating self, the poems in Nautilus II reveal who we can be from day-to-day. Women brimming with attitude, women birthing new loves who will love them back, women stepping into futures shaped by their own imaginations and sheer will. And women showcasing the softness of the human heart. Welcome to the poems in Nautilus II!”
And e.E. Charlton-Trujillo, an award-winning Mexican American author, filmmaker, playwright and poet, says, “In the summer of 2013, I walked through the art covered halls of The Care Center. I was surrounded by the hopeful, dark, beautiful and sometimes haunted imaginations of young women who were sometimes discounted by society because of their race, their age or possibly for being a teen mom. The thing you must recognize is that I was in the presence of greatness--of strength, of pasión--of Creative Revolution. Now, in 2019, I honor the teen female writers who have bared their souls in these pages. They are the sisters, the nieces, the cousins, the aunts--they are the future of ideas carved from heartache and triumph. Their stories are sometimes raw, sometimes funny but always genuine to their experience. Make no mistake. It is a gift to translate one’s life in such a way. These poets will not be silenced by fear, by stigma, by situation. They are the warriors rising up on the page, their voices no longer caged in all that would attempt to silence them. It is this will to thrive against the hardest of times that I honor in each of them as I hope you will as well.”
The Odyssey Bookshop is located at 9 College Street in South Hadley. For more information about the event or to RSVP, please contact Jennifer Abeles at 413-532-2900 x118.
Nautilus II is in its seventeenth year of production, and is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s YouthReach Program.
Each year more than 100 pregnant and parenting teens use The Care Center. Services include academic classes in preparation for the HiSet, college courses, on-site daycare, health care, counseling, assistance with the transition to higher education, and door-to-door transportation. The Care Center is home to Bared Microcollege Holyoke, the first of its kind in the nation. Founded in 1986, The Care Center’s approach has led to regional and national recognition as a model of effective programming for young families. In 2012 The Care Center was selected as one of twelve in the country to receive the Presidential Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award – the highest honor a program like this can receive. In 2019 The Care Center was awarded the Commonwealth Award, the highest honor given to cultural organizations in Massachusetts.