South 85 Journal Brings Poetry to YouTube

south85Converse College Low-Residency MFA program has long been proud of our online literary journal, South 85Helmed by Converse MFA fiction alumna, Debby DeRosa, the journal is a well-curated online publication featuring fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and visual art from writers and artists across the country.

Not one to allow our beloved publication to drift in the sea of similar online journals, Debby is constantly looking for innovative ways of featuring the work and artistry that make up South 85.

Enter the South85 YouTube channel.  Once a month, this brand new channel will feature videos of select poets reading their own work.  The inaugural performance video dropped October 9, 2017, and it features Converse MFA alumna, Mel Sherrer, reading her poetry to bassoon accompaniment by bassoonist, Liz Valvano.  See link below.

Enjoy this month’s video post, and be sure to click “Subscribe,” so you don’t miss next month’s post.  All of us in the MFA office are proud of Debby and her staff’s innovative ideas and the professionalism with which they execute them.  And a huge shout-out to multi-talented alumna, Mel Sherrer, and her friend, Liz Valvano.  Beautiful work, ladies.

To read the full text of Mel’s poem, click here.


Mel-Sherrer-100x100 Mel Sherrer completed her MFA at Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. She uses her Southern roots and knowledge of sonic aesthetic to create poems which have personal reverence for place, time, and societal evolution. Mel has been performing poetry for more than ten years. She is currently the Managing Poetry Editor for South 85 Journal, and she regularly interviews writers for our blog. She lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she is an avid performer, angler, and Nerf collector.

Liz-Valvano-photo-100x100 Liz Valvano, bassoon, is beginning her Doctorate of Musical Arts in double reed performance at University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She completed her Masters in Music at Texas State University, woodwind performance under the tutelage of Daris Hale and Dr. Ian Davidson May 2017, and her BA in music and chemistry at Hollins University in May 2015, studying under Danny Felty of the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra. Currently, she performs with the UNLV Symphony Orchestra and Honors Graduate Wind Quintet.



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