The Black Diamond Writers' Network will host a speaker on Saturday who will discuss how to transform poems into song.

Loretta Murphy-Birster, writer, singer and performer (as well as school nurse) will share her knowledge and expertise on the similarities and differences between poems and lyrics and adapting poetry to song in her presentation, "The Music of Poetry: Transforming Poems into Song." She will also talk about poetry, lyric writing and choosing music for poetry readings.

Involved in the performing arts for over 25 years, Murphy-Birster has performed at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, and in a variety of productions ranging from Broadway style musicals and murder mysteries to street theater and improvisation, including working with the York Little Theatre, the Medieval Feasting Guild, Lift Your Spirits Performing Arts, the Actors Guild of Schuylkill County and the Anthracite Citizen's Theater.

Murphy-Birster also published a historical fiction novel, The Pipes Are Calling, and Irish Roads, a volume of poetry. Her short story, North on 61: Coal Breakers and Windmills, was published in a special commemorative issue of the Pottsville Republican marking Schuylkill County's Bicentennial.

She also wrote, performed and directed the popular Irish one- act comedy, "Finnegans' Wake," for five years at the Clover Fire Company's annual Irish Weekend in Heckschersville. Recently, she wrote a second "Finnegans' Wake" for the Locust Dale Volunteer Fire Company.

The Black Diamond Writers' Network monthly meeting will take place from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 18 at the Tamaqua Public Library, 30 S. Railroad St., Tamaqua. The meeting is free and open to the public.

For more information about the Black Diamond Writers Network, call Kathy Ruff at (570) 645-3059 or visit the Tamaqua Public Library web site www.tamaquapubliclibrary.com [1]. For directions, call the Tamaqua Public Library at (570) 668-4660.