It is National Poetry Month and Ashland is chock-full of poetry events throughout the month and beyond. Here’s a list of happenings around town. Almost all of these are free of charge and open to the public.
Poetry Reading with the “Cascadia Review” poets
Thursday, April 2, 7:00 pm
Featuring: Gary Lark, Amy Miller, Pepper Trail, Angela Decker, Patty Wixon, Vince Wixon and “Cascadia Review” editor, Amy MacLennan
Poetry reading with Rogue Valley Chapter of the Oregon Poets Association
Wednesday, April 15, 7:00 pm
Featuring: Charlotte Abernathy, Beth Beurkens, Sara-Lynne Simpson, Kathy Dunn, David Hoffman, Dan Kaufman, Ines Diez, Liz Robinson, Jo Anna Shaw, and Linda Barnes
Thursday, April 16, 7:00 pm
Author of “The Well-Versed Parent: Poetic Prescriptions for Parenthood,” Hunter explores the emotional and physical shifts of parenting, using the combined wisdom of more than 40 poets, including Sylvia Plath, Naomi Shihab Nye, Gary Snyder, Sharon Olds and Charles Wright.
Poetry Reading with Jonah Bornstein and Richard Lehnert
Thursday, April 23, 7:00 pm
Jonah Bornstein’s most recent collections of poems include “The Art of Waking” and “Treatise on Emptiness.” Richard Lehnert is the author of “A Short History of the Usual,” and his poems have appeared in “Poetry,” “The Sun,” “Prairie Schooner,” and many other journals.
Poetry Reading with Scott Wozniak, T-Poe Varnado and Liesl Garner
Monday, April 27, 7:00 pm
Varnado is a spoken-word artist and host of the Rogue Poetry slam. He’ll read from his chapbook. Garner is in the process of putting her chapbook together and Wozniak is the author of “Bumrush the Fantasy.”
Poetry Reading with Julie Rogers and David Meltzer
Wednesday, April 29, 7:00 pm
Rogers is the author of “House Of The Unexpected” and “Street Warp.” Meltzer was one of the first to record poetry with jazz in the late 1950s. He has authored many volumes of poetry, fiction, essays, anthologies, and collections of interviews.
All events are free and open to the public. Bloomsbury is at 290 E Main Street, Ashland.
Oregon Shakespeare Festival
Monday, April 6, 7:00, at the Black Swan Theater
Hip-hop open mic. Here’s a chance for everyone to strut their creative stuff. It’s a warm and easygoing event, hosted by the delightful OSF producer Claudia Alick. Community members can perform poetry, music, dance, theater. The event opens with featured poet and Ashland High School graduate, Clementine Von Radics. Get there a little early to sign up to perform.
The theater is at 15 S. Pioneer Street, Ashland
For more information visit: www.osfashland.org/nexthetics.
Chautauqua Poets & Writers
Monday, April 6, 7:30 pm
Ashland High School Mountain Avenue Theater, 201 S. Mountain,
Novelist Jane Hamilton will speak and share her work.
Ashland Sketches: Second Sunday Showcase
Sunday, April 12, 7:00 pm
This is a fun mix of dancers, musicians, artists and poets.
Dancing People Company, 310 Oak St., Ashland
Ashland Public Library
April 19, 1:00 pm
Open mic and reading with Amy Miller, Amy MacLennan and Angela Decker. Come for the poetry stay for the tea and cookies.
The following offer a year-round venue for poetry and performances.
Northwest Pizza and Pasta Poetry Slam
This is a monthly event every third Tuesday, and seriously good fun. It’s a real slam (judges score poets in three rounds) with an easygoing vibe. Also, the pizza is yummy and the staff at Northwest Pizza are great. A small audience entry fee goes toward prizes. Participants in the slam get in free, so all the more reason to get up and read.
Northwest Pizza is at 1585 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland
Sunday evenings at 8:00 pm, the Wild Goose hosts a mix of poetry and performance. The restaurant and bar is located at 2365 Ashland Street. For information call (541) 488-4103.
Downtowne Coffeehouse (Talent)
The second Thursday of every month, the Downtowne Coffeehouse hosts a poetry open mike. While the café has a talented group of regulars, newcomers always receive a hearty welcome. The café is located at 200 Talent Ave (and Wagner Blvd.). For information, call (541) 535-2299.