Big News–DiVerse Restart-New Host, New Day

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!

–Lucinda Marshall

New MoCo Poetry Events Hub

Want to go to a poetry event in Montgomery County, MD but don’t know who is reading or presenting where when?  Check out the new MoCo Poetry Events page on Facebook, which will post listings for events throughout the county.  Huge kudos to Gaithersburg poet Kristin Kowalski Ferragut for this great idea and for doing the hard work to make it happen!

Field Trip–Kensington Day Of The Book

DiVerse Gaithersburg is delighted to be participating in Kensington Day Of The Book’s poetry program, All The Imagination Can Hold, on April 26th, 2020. Many thanks to Kensington Day Of The Book Poet Laureate, Nancy Naomi Carlson, for including us.  The DiVerse Gaithersburg roster will include poets who have been featured at our readings–Teri Ellen Cross Davis, Marlena Chertock, Kristin Kowalski Ferragut, and host Lucinda Marshall.  Come join us for a day of poetry and literature!

September 8th Reading With Le Hinton, Jona Colson, and Kristin Kowalski Ferragut

Please join us on September 8th, 2-4 pm when our featured poets will be Le Hinton, Jona Colson, and Kristin Kowalski Ferragut. We will be in our new location at the Quince Orchard Library (15831 Quince Orchard Rd./Gaithersburg 20878).  There is plenty of free parking and as you walk into the library lobby, you will see the room where the poetry reading is located just to your left before you enter the library. The reading is hosted by Lucinda Marshall and will be followed by an Open Mic.  Please feel free to bring a poem that you have written to share (one page maximum).

LeHintonLe Hinton is the author of six poetry collections including, most recently, Sing Silence (Iris G. Press, 2018). His work has been widely published  and was nominated for the Pushcart Prize by Pittsburgh Poetry Review for “Interview with Cotton (Part 1/Dreams)” and the Best of the Net by the Summerset Review for “Uses of Cotton (Visibility).” His poem “Epidemic” was honored by The Pennsylvania Center for the Book, and his poem “No Doubt About It (I Gotta Get Another Hat)” was selected for inclusion in The Best American Poetry 2014. “Our Ballpark” can be found outside Clipper Magazine Stadium in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, incorporated into Derek Parker’s sculpture Common Thread.

Kristin FerragutKristin Kowalski Ferragut is a regular contributor to open mics, at such venues as DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry and Roots Studio. She has been the featured poet at Words Out Loud at Glen Echo and participates in local poetry and prose writing workshops, in addition to reading, hiking, teaching, and enjoying time with her children. Her work has appeared in Beltway Quarterly, Nightingale and Sparrow, and Bourgeon among others.

Jona Colson Jona Colson’s first poetry collection, Said Through Glass, won the Jean Feldman Poetry Prize from the Washington Writers’ Publishing House. His poems have appeared in Ploughshares, The Southern ReviewThe Massachusetts Review and elsewhere. His translations and interviews can be found in Prairie Schooner, Tupelo Quarterly, and The Writer’s Chronicle. He is an associate professor of ESL at Montgomery College in Maryland and lives in Washington, DC.

Fall, 2019 Reading Schedule

We have a wonderful lineup of poets this upcoming fall!  All of our readings will be at the Quince Orchard Library, 2-4 pm, with an open mic following our featured poets.

September 8th:

October 13th:

November 10th:

December 8th:

We are excited to be dedicating both our October and December readings to poets who also pursue other creative work.  In addition to sharing their poetry, the poets will also be discussing their other artistic endeavors and how they work with multiple creative forms of expression.

More details and poet bios will be posted approximately a month before each reading.