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.

January 13th Reading With Sistah Joy Alford, Tanya Olson, and Kristin Ferragut

Please join us on January 13th when our featured poets will be Sistah Joy Alford, Tanya Olson, and Kristin Ferragut, upstairs at the Gaithersburg Library, 2-4 pm. The reading is hosted by Lucinda Marshall and will be followed by an Open Mic.
Sistah Joy - 2017 Joy “Sistah Joy” Matthews Alford is the inaugural Poet Laureate of Prince George’s County, Maryland. She is an author, arts advocate, as well as the producer and host of award-winning poetry-based cable television show, Sojourn with Words. Sistah Joy received the Poet Laureate Special Award (2002) for “her outstanding contributions to the art of poetry” in her native Washington, DC. She is an alum of the late Washington, DC Poet Laureate’s “Poets in Progress” series and also of the Mariposa Writers Retreat. In 1995 she founded the socially-conscious poetry ensemble, Collective Voices, which has performed nationally and internationally (London, England) and continues to perform in the U.S. primarily along the East coast. Sistah Joy is the author of three books, Lord I’m Dancin’ As Fast As I Can (2000); From Pain to Empowerment, The Fabric of My Being (2009); and This Garden Called Life (2011). Sistah Joy is also the Poet Laureate of Ebenezer A.M.E. Church in Fort Washington, Maryland where she has served as president of that church’s Poetry Ministry for the past 15 years. Her poetry efforts particularly include literacy, social justice, individual empowerment and support for underserved youth groups and women’s support organizations. She is a Charter Board Member of C.A.A.P.A. (Coalition for African Americans in the Performing Arts, Inc.).

Tanya OlsonTanya Olson lives in Silver Spring, Maryland and is a Lecturer in English at University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC). Her first book, Boyishly, was published by YesYes Books in 2013 and was awarded a 2014 American Book Award. Her second book, Stay, is forthcoming from YesYes Books in March 2019. She has also won the Discovery/Boston Review prize and was named a Lambda Emerging Writers Fellow by the Lambda Literary Foundation. Her poem 54 Prince was included in Best American Poetry 2015.

Kristin FerragutKristin Kowalski Ferragut is a regular contributor to open mics, at such venues as DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry and Words Out Loud. She participates in local poetry and prose writing workshops, in addition to reading, biking, hiking and teaching. Her work has appeared in Beltway Quarterly.

October 14th Reading With Doritt Carroll, Indran Amirthanayagam, and Tara Campbell

Please join us on October 14th when our featured poets will be Doritt Carroll, Tara Campbell and Indran Amirthanayagam, upstairs at the Gaithersburg Library, 2-4 pm. The reading is hosted by Lucinda Marshall and will be followed by an Open Mic.

Doritt CarrollDoritt Carroll is (unfortunately) a lawyer and (fortunately) the mother of two daughters.  A native of Washington, DC, she received her undergraduate and law degrees from Georgetown University.  Her collection, In Caves, was published in 2010 by Brickhouse Books.  Her book, GLTTL STP, was published in 2013 by Brickhouse Books, and the title poem was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her chapbook, Sorry You Are Not An Instant Winner, was published by Kattywompus in 2017. Her poems have appeared in Coal City Review, Poet Lore, Gargoyle, Nimrod, Slipstream, Rattle, Plainsongs, Poetry Depth Quarterly, Maryland Poetry Review, Explorations, Negative Capability, Poet’s Canvas, Illuminations, The Baltimore Review, Journal of Formal Poetry, Harlequin Creature, Lummox, Commonthought Magazine, Innisfree Poetry Journal, Folio, and Beltway Poetry Quarterly, and she has served as a Shakespeare Theatre poet-in-residence.  She currently runs the Zed’s poetry reading and open mic series.

Tara CampbellTara Campbell is a fiction editor at Barrelhouse and an MFA candidate at American University. Prior publication credits include SmokeLong Quarterly, Masters Review, District Lit, Quail Bell Magazine, Jellyfish Review, Strange Horizons, and Heavy Feather Review. Her debut novel, TreeVolution, was published in 2016, and her collection of poetry and fiction, Circe’s Bicycle, was released in spring 2018.

IndranIndran Amirthanayagam is a poet, journalist , musician, culture critic and diplomat. He writes in English, Spanish, French, Haitian Creole and Portuguese, and has published thirteen poetry collections thus far, including The Elephants of Reckoning (Hanging Loose Press, NY, 1993), which won the 1994 Paterson Prize in the United States,  The Splintered Face: Tsunami Poems (Hanging Loose Press, NY, 2008) and Uncivil War(Tsar/now Mawenzi House, Toronto, 2013). His French poems are included in Aller-Retour au Bord de La Mer (Legs Editions, Port au Prince, December 2014) and Il n’est que l’ile lointaine (Legs Editions, Port Au Prince, 2017).  His latest in Spanish is Ventana Azul (El Tapiz del Unicornio, Mexico City, 2016).  And in Creole he has published Pwezi a Kat Men(Delince Editions, Miami, 2017)– a dialog in poetry written with Alex Laguerre.  Amirthanayagam’s articles, essays and op-eds have been published in the New York Times, the Hindu, Reforma, El Norte, The Indian Express, The Deccan Chronicle, The Daily News (Sri Lanka), the Island (Sri Lanka), among other newspapers. His theater criticism appeared in the Westsider and the Chelsea-Clinton News in New York City ( 1986- 1992). His first album, Rankont Dout, was released in January 2018.

Fall Readings Get Off To A Fantastic Start

Wow!!  Thank you Hiram Larew, Nancy Naomi Carlson, and Steven Leyva for sharing your wonderful poetry with us at our first fall reading.  And thanks also to Marianne Szlyk for bringing her students and workshop participants from Montgomery County Community College in Rockville to join us.  (Sneak peak–Marianne will be one of our featured readers in the spring!).  The reading was attended by 40 people and we had a record number of readers at the Open Mic.

September 9th Reading With Steven Leyva, Nancy Naomi Carlson, and Hiram Larew

Please join us on September 9th for our first fall reading with featured poets Steven Leyva, Nancy Naomi Carlson, and Hiram Larew, upstairs at the Gaithersburg Library, 2-4 pm. The reading is hosted by Lucinda Marshall and will be followed by an Open Mic.

Steven_LeyvaSteven Leyva  was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and raised in Houston, Texas. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in 2 Bridges Review, Fledgling Rag, The Light Ekphrastic, Nashville Review, Vinyl, and Prairie Schooner. He is a Cave Canem fellow and author of the chapbook Low Parish.  Steven holds a MFA from the University of Baltimore, where he is an assistant professor in the Klein Family School of Communications Design.

Nancy Naomi CarlsonNancy Naomi Carlson, poet, translator, editor, and essayist, has authored nine titles (6 translated). She received a grant from the NEA to translate a poetry collection of Abdourahman A. Waberi, which was a “Best Translated Book Award” finalist, and her translation of Char’s Hammer with No Master was a finalist for the 2017 CLMP Firecracker Poetry Award. Her work has appeared in such journals as the American Poetry Review, The Georgia Review, and Poetry.

Hiram Larew’sHiram Larew work has appeared most recently in Little Patuxent Review, FORTH, vox poetica, Poetry Super Highway, Poets & Artists, Every Day Poems, Lunaris Review (Nigeria), Amsterdam Quarterly, and The Wild Word.  Author of three collections, he’s been nominated for four national Pushcart prizes, is a member of the Shakespeare Folger Library’s poetry board, and organizes several events in Prince George’s County, MD and beyond including Poetry X Hunger and The Poetry Poster Project. He is a global hunger specialist, and lives in Upper Marlboro, MD.

Sneak Peak: Fall Readings

The DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry Reading and Open Mic has 3 fabulous readings scheduled this fall.  All readings are hosted by Lucinda Marshall and take place upstairs at the Gaithersburg Library, 2-4 pm.

September 9th:

October 14th:

November:  No reading because the library is closed for Veteran’s Day.

December 9th:

 

Look for an updated book list in a few weeks and more information about the featured poets starting in August!

Fabulous Spring Finale/Eve Burton’s Workshops

Thanks to all who came out for our last reading of the spring, we so enjoyed hearing Kim Roberts, Eve Burton, and Clarence Williams share their poetry.  I am getting ready to post a longer piece about this, but as I mentioned at the reading, many good things have happened in the last year as a result of this reading series including the opportunity for poets to network and connect professionally.

Last night I attended one of Eve Burton’s poetry workshops at the Quince Orchard Library and was thrilled when one of the poems that she used as an example for the exercise we were doing was a poem that Kim Roberts read at the reading!  If you’re looking for a poetry workshop in the Gaithersburg area, check it out, the next one is July 12th at the Quince Orchard Library, 7 pm.  The assignment for the workshop is to write a list poem, so give it a try and bring a poem to share!  Eve also leads workshops for teens and children, you can find the information on the QO Library site.