Tag Archives: #Poetry

Curlie Blue

by Valerie Smith

Summer 2017

The Blues down south would cut you
like a paper mill and let your rotten stink
blow all the way north on a hot summer breeze.
That’s how she left, you know.

She was the second oldest of thirteen,
stocky as a sawed-off shotgun, red hair,
freckles and plump green eyes that traced
an un-retraceable line.

When I met her, she was Sunday dressed
in a full-length cashmere coat and matching
camel-colored hat. The wide brim tilted over
her right eye leaned into each heavy stride.

Legend has it, she snatched a black snake
out an oak tree in mid conversation and
ripped his head off in the street. She gripped
my hand and pulled a knife one night –

we stayed too late at Menlo Park Mall
and had to walk out the service exit.
I was just tall enough to see the blade
flash in the corner of my eye.

Her anointed hands could rub a rash clean
and make me believe the Blues
were always one bitter snuff can away
from spittin’ out the truth.

Valerie Smith

Valerie Smith delights in writing poetry and creative nonfiction. She is currently studying Creative Writing in the Master of Arts in Professional Writing program at Kennesaw State University where she is also a Graduate Teaching Assistant of first-year composition. Most recently, she presented her poems at the 2016 Decatur Book Festival. Her poetry has also appeared in Exit 271: Your Georgia Writers Resource and BlazeVOX15.

Accepting Residency Applications

Follow Your Passion for Creative Writing!

Do you wish you could put your love for writing first?

Would you like a course of study that is personalized to your specific interests?

Have you always wanted to work closely with published authors and mentors?

Then apply today to Converse University’s Low-Residency MFA program and choose to empower your writing.
Click here to Apply

* * * * *

Not sure whether you are ready to start an MFA program?

Try the Converse MFA Immersion Residency, which offers writers who hold a bachelor’s degree a chance to immerse themselves in the writing culture by attending and fully participating in one full residency session.
Click here to Apply

* * * * *

Interested in a less immersive experience?

The Converse Low Residency MFA program also offers a lecture pass that includes morning and afternoon craft lectures and round table discussions as part of the instructional curriculum during each residency session.

 It’s a great opportunity  to get a glimpse into the Converse MFA program.
Click here to Apply

* * * * *

Get Published!

Students and alums of the Converse MFA program have access to publishing opportunities through the Clemson-Converse Literature Series and can submit their manuscripts to the  Converse MFA series for the biennial award. 

Click here to Apply

* * * * *

What you need to apply:
Application Deadline: February 15, 2022 for Summer Residency (June 2-11, 2022).

In addition to meeting the minimum requirements set by the Converse University Graduate School, the MFA applicant must receive approval for degree program status from the MFA program faculty and director.

1. Manuscript, according to genre directions (see link).

2. MFA manuscript cover sheet attached to each copy of portfolio.

3. Two (2) letters of academic and/or professional references .

4. Official transcripts from the accredited college or university from which applicant’s highest degree was awarded. A minimum GPA of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale is required for full admission.

5. A brief personal statement .

6. Online application with the $40 application fee.