Speaking for Earth: Poetry Reading & Discussion on Climate Crisis

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Adults, Older Adults
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Program Description

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We are living on a fragile and sacred planet that needs us to speak on its behalf. How can we find the words to express our concern, grief, and awe for this planet that we call our home? The act of reading and writing poetry can train us to listen deeply to the voices of the earth.

Poet Hila Ratzabi will read from her debut book of environmental poetry, There Are Still Woods, and lead a discussion and creative writing exercise on how we can respond to the climate crisis. A representative from the Village of Oak Park Office of Sustainability and Resilience will share updates on local efforts to respond to the climate crisis and invite the community to get involved.

About Hila Ratzabi
Hila Ratzabi is the author of the poetry collection There Are Still Woods (June Road Press, 2022). Her poetry has been published in Narrative, Linebreak, Alaska Quarterly Review, The Adroit Journal, and other literary journals, and in The Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry and Ghost Fishing: An Eco-Justice Poetry Anthology. She holds an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and lives in Oak Park with her partner and two children.

About Marcella Bondie Keenan
Marcella Bondie Keenan, AICP, is the Chief Sustainability Officer for the Village of Oak Park. During her time in Oak Park, Marcella has overseen the creation and implementation of Climate Ready Oak Park, winner of the CMAP Regional Excellence Award for Community Resilience. Prior to joining the Village, Marcella worked in the nonprofit and consulting sectors for two decades and volunteered for environmental, planning, and DEI organizations. Marcella has received the Illinois American Planning Association's Distinguished Service Award. Ms. Bondie Keenan holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Biology. Ms. Bondie Keenan is passionate about using environmental policy and programs to create healthier, more just communities.