About Melissa Hassard

"What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open." -- Muriel Rukeyser

What Catches the Light | poem

Melissa Hassard/ February 10, 2018/ Poetry

What Catches the Light I press the handle of a knife into his hand and he scrapes the shimmer of salmon, the red flesh face down against his palm, where the scales collect like sooted snow. He speaks with a voice low like dusk, wipes the blade clean with his fingers tells a story of the Red Sea, thick with

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Melissa Hassard/ July 6, 2017/ Awards, Poetry

The mail has come, as I was thinking of you I was wondering about the man that delivered your letter   when the dogs barked, I didn’t think anything of it was his day suddenly made inexplicably better   but I meant to say earlier that I didn’t miss it when your letter fell into his bag    when you said

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Congratulations to Iman Dancy, 2017 North Carolina Poetry Out Loud Champion

Melissa Hassard/ May 2, 2017/ Poetry Out Loud/ 0 comments

I’ve just gotten back from the 2017 National Finals for Poetry Out Loud, held on April 25-26, 2017 in Washington, D.C. at the Renaissance Dupont Circle and Lisner Auditorium on the GWU campus. What an incredible event. Our North Carolina state champion, Iman Dancy, did an excellent job performing her poems. (“Learning to Love America” and “On Virtue.”) In the

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Pleased to be included in North Dakota Quarterly 83.1

Melissa Hassard/ May 16, 2016/ Announcement/ 0 comments

I’m thrilled and honored to have a poem included in the latest issue of the North Dakota Quarterly. NDQ is a fine journal with a sterling reputation — please subscribe to them here. This issue’s cover features starkly beautiful photography, and the content within is equally gorgeous yet harrowing. North Dakota Quarterly is pleased to announce the release of our newest

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Essay Contest for H.S. Football Players on Domestic Violence

Melissa Hassard/ September 18, 2014/ Contest/ 5 comments

In order to bring more awareness to the issue of domestic violence within the football culture, and open up the conversation with young players, Jacar Press, a community active press, and Women Writers of the Triad are teaming up to host an essay competition for high school football players on “Why Domestic Violence is Wrong.” Student essays may be submitted

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The 2014 Citizen Diplomacy Summit and Building Cultural Bridges in the Social Media Age

Melissa Hassard/ September 12, 2014/ Panel/ 0 comments

Imagine if everyone got involved? I’m honored to have been invited to the panel last night for the 2014 Citizen Diplomacy Summit  in Cary, North Carolina, at The Cary Downtown Theater.  The panel was moderated by Dr. Calvin Hall from NCCU, and included Leila Bekri, who works in promoting diplomacy and cultural exchanges for an international leadership program, Leslie Huffman, who founded

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Writing for Peace

Melissa Hassard/ September 3, 2014/ Activism/Advocacy/ 0 comments

I have proudly accepted the role and honor as a member of the advisory panel for Writing for Peace.  If you are not aware of this fine organization, run by Carmel Mawle, here is their mission statement: Through education and creative writing, Writing for Peace seeks to cultivate the empathy that allows minds to open to new cultural views, to value the differences as well

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