Ann Bracken is an activist with a pen. She has started over more times than she can count and believes that she possesses a strong gene for reinvention driving her desire for change. Ann’s changed her job and her mind, but never wavers from her commitment to family, friends, writing, and social justice.
She’s the author of two collections of poetry, No Barking in the Hallways: Poems from the Classroom (2017) and The Altar of Innocence (2015), both published by New Academia Publishing, Scarith Imprint, and she serves as a contributing editor for Little Patuxent Review. Her poetry, essays, and interviews have appeared in anthologies and journals, including Little Patuxent Review, Gargoyle, Mipoeisis, New Verse News, Gyroscope, ArLiJo, Mad in America, and Women Write Resistance: Poets Resist Gender Violence among others. Ann’s poetry has garnered two nominations for the Pushcart Prize, and she co-facilitates Wilde Readings Poetry Series in Columbia, MD. Ann’s advocacy work centers around arts-based interventions for mental health and prison reform, and she offers writing workshops in the community.
Ann’s interviews for Little Patuxent Reviewinclude such notables as Grace Cavalieri, host of The Poet and the Poem and Poet Laureate of Maryland; Paul Rucker, visual artist and cellist; Jason Reynolds, award-winning Young Adult author; Betty May, prison activist and author; and Morna McDermott, university professor and social justice activist.
Educated at Towson University( BA in Speech Pathology and Audiology) and Johns Hopkins University(M.S.Ed. in Communication and Learning Disorders ), Bracken’s work as a teacher in public and private schools, community colleges, and the University of Maryland College Park during the past forty years has focused on giving women, students of all ages, and imprisoned people a voice. Her post-graduate work in drama in education from Dublin’s Trinity College, journal instruction training from The Center for Journal Therapyand poetry therapy training from The National Federation for Biblio/Poetry Therapy all weave their way into her classrooms and workshops, making them creative and memorable learning environments.
Ann has two grown children and lives in Columbia, MD.