SCF Resident Poets Highlighted in National Poetry Month

(Bradenton, Fla., April 19, 2010) — In celebration of National Poetry Month, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) recognizes employees who have published or edited a book of original or translated poetry.

• SCF Vice President of Academic Quality and Success Dr. Jack Crocker’s first collection of poetry, “The Last Resort,” was published by Texas Review Press in February 2009. His poems range widely, capturing for example his childhood in the Mississippi Delta, his golf game, fascination for his then 2-month-old daughter, Jessi, and reflections on the making of poems. His poems also have been anthologized in “The Texas Anthology,” “Mississippi Writers,” “Reflections on Childhood,” “Texas Stories and Poems” and “Florida in Poetry.”

• Bradley Warren Davis, SCF associate vice president of program evaluation and compliance, wrote an introduction and translated a newly released bilingual edition of poetry, “September Elegies,” by Benito Pastoriza Iyodo. His introduction explores the author’s broad use of the elegy to portray ecological fragility, evolving urban life, geopolitical challenges, and society’s increasing marginalization of individuals. The book was recently reviewed by the “Library Journal.” In addition, Davis has translated short stories from another book written by Pastoriza Iyodo, which appear in a bilingual edition titled, “A Matter of Men.”

• Debra Gingerich, Web communications and publications manager, is author of “Where We Start,” published by Cascadia Publishing House in March 2007. Gingerich draws upon her Mennonite culture as well as her husband’s upbringing in the former Yugoslavia to explore the tensions between individual identity and community loyalty, along with the sharp turns of any life’s migration. Her poem, "To My Yugoslavian In-Laws," was read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer’s Almanac, a public radio program of poetry and history. Gingerich also won the John Ringling Towers Fund Individual Artist Award that recognizes creative artists in Sarasota County.

• Jane Anderson Jones, SCF professor, language and literature, is coeditor of an anthology, “Florida in Poetry,” a collection of poems about Florida that ranges from experiences by early explorers to contemporary writers. The anthology includes literary works by well-known poets Walt Whitman and Ralph Waldo Emerson.

• Charlene Pratt, academic office assistant, wrote “Stir Fry Poetry,” published in May 2009 under the pen name Summer Harp. The book, which includes poems that display love, care, and mystical journey, is available at

• Dr. Len Blanchard, extended adjunct, language and literature, has written “An American Passion,” published in 2001 and newly released by Author House this year. The literary work is an epic poem on the life and killing of Crazy Horse, a legendary war chief of the Oglala Lakota Sioux narrated by his father, a close warrior friend, his wife and the woman he loved. Another book, “Provocations of the Birds and the Beach,” published in 2005 by Bellowing Ark Press, is a collection of poems and meditations inspired by Florida’s beaches from Key West to Anna Maria Island. It is available at

These collections are available on, or can be ordered through a major bookstore, unless otherwise noted.

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