Dear Poets and Community Friends,
I’ll give you the punchline first—the DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry Reading is planning to re-start this winter on a new day and with a new host! Got your attention? Read on…
When the pandemic hit almost two years ago, never in my worst imaginings did I think that the DiVerse Gaithersburg poetry reading would be on pause for this long. As I write this, the Montgomery County libraries are still not open on Sundays and the meeting room at the Quince Orchard Library has not re-opened for use either. It is unclear whether the libraries will start operating on Sundays again, so with the help of Eve Burton, the librarian that we work with at Quince Orchard Library, we are moving the reading to 2nd Saturday afternoons beginning in January, exact time to be determined and information about any restrictions nearer to the date. I am grateful to Eve for all her work to make it possible for us to meet at the library.
And now for the really big news:
Like many people, I had plenty of time when things were shutdown to do some thinking about the work that I do and what I want moving forward. One of the things I realized is that after 50 plus years of organizing and community building of various kinds, I really want to be doing other things with my time. Which led me to start thinking about finding someone to take over hosting DiVerse. After some thought and talking it over with a few people (and thank you to those of you who helped me think it through!), I realized the choice was obvious and luckily the timing was right for her as well. I am thrilled to announce that my good friend and amazing poet Kristin Kowalski Ferragut will be taking over as the host of the DiVerse Gaithersburg poetry reading!
Over the next few months Kristin and I will be making that transition happen. She will be starting to look at programming for the spring and will start sharing that info when she is ready. We will be posting again on the website and facebook page, so keep an eye out for that.
I will remain as a resource person as needed until things are up and running and will no doubt be at many readings happily sitting in the audience.
Since I started organizing poetry readings in Gaithersburg, some 50 poets from a multitude of backgrounds have come to share their work with us, plus countless more at the open mics that followed, including some bravely reading for the first time. While always a work in progress, the diversity of our programming is something that I am proud of.
Since the reading began four years ago, DiVerse has become both a community and a community resource. Regular attendees have gotten to know each other, work on our craft together and become friends. And because we meet at the library, we often attract folks from the community who perhaps have never been to a reading before.
I know that Kristin shares my vision of how important these things are and will bring her own wonderful talent and ideas to continuing the readings. So please join me in welcoming her to this new role and for goodness sake, help her to get the chairs set up (if you’ve been to a DiVerse reading, you know what I mean)!
With gratitude to all of you for making the DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry Reading a success!