By Kelley Shinn

Poetry and Performance lovers, take note. Award-winning poet Phillip Shabazz of Chapel Hill is coming to Ocracoke Island to share his fire for “living words” from Aug. 7 to 8.

Shabazz, a poet, author and teaching artist, will perform from his latest collections of poems, “Flames in the Fire,” Thursday, Aug. 7, on Bob Ray’s “Rabbit Opera” from 7 to 8 p.m. on WOVV 91.0 FM.

If the cocktail hour distracts you, then at 3 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, you can meet Shabazz for a book signing at Books to Be Red, School Road. Later that evening, Ray will host an evening to celebrate poets and performers, including Shabazz, at 7 p.m. at the Books to Be Red stage.

Shabazz, whose work expresses various points of view exploring the issues of community and culture, is a poet-in-the-schools in North Carolina and is affiliated with the N.C. Arts Council. In 1997, he became Duke University’s third artist-in-residence at the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture.

Other local talents who will perform include singer/songwriter Carol Soo Lee, writers Pat Garber and Kelley Shinn, Mickey Baker, reading the poetry of Carmie Prete (unless Prete reads herself) and Ocracoke high school student, Waylon Underwood.

Ray also will perform his acclaimed “White Days Unswal¬lowed” with Kevin Hardy.

That’s the kind of Ocracoke line-up that can give you a philological hangover.

So, word up and bring seating to the Live Oak Stage at Books to Be Red. This event is open to the public and free of charge.

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