Ralston library

A group of writers is ringing in the new year by sharing their creativity with the Ralston community, and anyone else who wants to join.

On Saturday, the Nebraska Writers Workshop will host its 15th annual Words on the Winter Wind.

The free event, which gives poets a chance to read their work aloud, will be from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Baright Public Library, 5555 S. 77th St.

Words on the Winter Wind will feature seven workshop poets from the metro area who will share 10-15 minutes of their writing.

Sally Walker, founder of the NWW, said the event started as a way to showcase members’ talents and now, it’s something she looks forward to after the holidays.

“It’s such a stimulating event with such a vast variety of people dedicated to poetic imagery,” she said. “I look forward to it every year.”

During their time at the podium, which will stand in front of the fireplace at Baright, poets will display unique writing samples.

From personal experiences to political statements, no reading is alike, Walker said.

“It’s a variety of voices we get to hear that evening,” she said. “With so many poets, it’s all different. Some are humorous, some are very solemn.”

Throughout the year, those a part of NWW, Walker said, are tasked with working on their pieces and getting feedback from their peers.

But now, instead of hearing snippets of members’ work, she said she is excited to hear poems in their entirety.

“It’s an essential human experience,” she said. “Poetry is meant to be heard and experienced on the spot. When you have poets emphasizing the words from their hearts, that’s powerful.”

Walker said anyone is welcome to attend and enjoy an evening full of “enriching” entertainment by people who are passionate about writing.

Walker said she encourages people to come so they can “become familiar with sophisticated language and the creative ability people have in the Omaha community,” she said.

Additionally, she said she wants people to have fun, enjoy refreshments provided by the library and soak in the atmosphere of “beautiful” Baright.

By attending the reading, Walker said she hopes audience members not only enjoy it, but also that the readers learn from the experience.

As a poet, Walker said it is useful for writers to see how their work is perceived based on audience reactions.

She also hopes it motivates her students to continue to write and want to be heard, she said.

“I’m so privileged to know these people and share in the magic of the written language,” Walker said.

To learn more about the NWW, visit nebraskawritersworkshop.info.

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