Did you ever wonder about the 2’x 10’ panoramic picture that is on the side of the library between the two entrances? It was taken in the fall of 1914 and produced on 3 (6x4) photos. The photographer stood at the edge of the Johnson County Cemetery that is on Church Street facing south to capture this image. Stop by the library and you can see what Paintsville looked like 100 years ago.
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The library will be closed Monday, February 15 in observance of President's Day.
There will be a booktalk for this Thursday, February 4th, starting at 6:00 p.m. The book, The Most They Ever Had by Rick Bragg will be discussed at the Johnson County Public Library. For more information call the library at 789-4355.
There will be a booktalk for this Thursday, February 18th, starting at 6:00 p.m. The book, The Great Chocolate Scam by Sally Berneathy will be discussed at the Johnson County Public Library. For more information call the library at 789-4355.
A Needlework Circle Class will be held at the library, Saturday, February 6th, 13th, 20th, 27th from 10:00 a.m - 12:00 p.m. All materials will be provided to first time participants. We are taking donations for yarn and yarn remnants. For more information call the library at 789-4355.
The Johnson County Public Library will host a Sack Lunch Book Talk at the library Thursday, February 11th from 12:10 p.m. - 12:50 p.m. We will be discussing the book The Most They Ever Had by Rick Bragg. If you have any questions contact the library at 789-4355.
The Johnson County Public Library will host a Sack Lunch Book Talk at the library Thursday, February 25th from 12:10 p.m. - 12:50 p.m. We will be discussing the book The Believers by Janice Holt Giles. If you have any questions contact the library at 789-4355.
The Johnson County Public Library, in partnership with the Kentucky Humanities Council, is proud to host 2015-2016 Kentucky Poet Laureate George Ella Lyon at the library on Thursday, January 14, 2016, at 6:00 PM to present her program “Mapping Your Memory House”.
While teaching aspiring writers, Lyon asked her students to write a poem based on memories rooted in a house where they had lived. Working on the assignment herself, Lyon began a personal journey, writing many poems for each room. In this intimate book, she strives to answer lingering questions about herself and her family: "Here I stand, at the beginning," she writes in the opening lines of the volume, "with more questions than / answers."
Collectively, the poems tell the sixty-eight-year-long story of the house, beginning with its construction by Lyon's grandfather and culminating with the poet's memories of bidding farewell to it after her mother's death. Moving, provocative, and heartfelt, Lyon's poetic excavations evoke more than just stock and stone; they explore the nature of memory and relationships, as well as the innermost architecture of love, family, and community. A poignant memoir in poems, Many-Storied House is a personal and revealing addition to George Ella Lyon's body of work.
As Kentucky’s poet laureate, George Ella is aiming for a poem from every county with the “Where I’m From” writing project. On her Website, www.georgellalyon.com, Lyon states
“'Where I'm From” grew out of my response to a poem from Stories I Ain't Told Nobody Yet (Orchard Books, 1989; Theater Communications Group, 1991) by my friend, Tennessee writer Jo Carson. All of the People Pieces, as Jo calls them, are based on things folks actually said, and number 22 begins, “I want to know when you get to be from a place” Jo's speaker, one of those people “that doesn't have roots like trees, ” tells us “I am from Interstate 40” and “I am from the work my father did. ”
In the summer of 1993, I decided to see what would happen if I made my own where-I'm-from lists, which I did, in a black and white speckled composition book. I edited them into a poem — not my usual way of working — but even when that was done I kept on making the lists. The process was too rich and too much fun to give up after only one poem. Realizing this, I decided to try it as an exercise with other writers, and it immediately took off. The list form is simple and familiar, and the question of where you are from reaches deep.
Since then, the poem as a writing prompt has traveled in amazing ways. People have used it at their family reunions, teachers have used it with kids all over the United States, in Ecuador and China; they have taken it to girls in juvenile detention, to men in prison for life, and to refugees in a camp in the Sudan. Its life beyond my notebook is a testimony to the power of poetry, of roots, and of teachers. My thanks to all of you who have taken it to heart and handed it on. It's a thrill to read the poems you send me, to have a window into that many young souls.
Lyon writes in many genres for readers of all ages and her more than 40 books, often rooted in Appalachia but appealing to a wider audience, have received many awards, including ALA’s Schneider Family Book Award, a Jane Addams Honor, a Golden Kite, the Appalachian Book of the Year, and the Bluegrass Award.
At her induction as Kentucky Poet Laureate in April of 2015, Governor Steve Beshear said of Lyon, "From her immense collection of poetry to her work as a teacher, George Ella Lyon's work is a portrait of Kentucky heritage and tradition. The Commonwealth is fortunate to have a writer like George Ella Lyon living and teaching within our borders.”
During her program at the Johnson County Public Library, Lyon will lead the audience through an exercise for writing from memories of a place you have lived and then read from Many-Storied House, her poetry collection that grew out of that exercise. This program is free, open to the public, and light refreshments will be served. The library requests that anyone wishing to attend call 789-4355 to preregister so that we may have enough writing materials for everyone.
If you would like more information about the “Where I’m From” writing project, please attend George Ella’s presentation or visit her website www.georgeellalyon.com. If you would like to submit a poem to be considered as the Johnson County entry for the “Where I’m From” project, please contact Christy Terry at the library at 789-4355.
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