In Ashland the poetry party doesn’t stop

It is National Poetry Month and this town does not miss a chance to celebrate. Luckily for us, Ashland doesn’t limit its poetry events to April, either. Here’s a list of happenings around town, both in April and ongoing. Almost all of these are free of charge and open to the public.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival
Monday, April 7, 7:00-9:00 at the Black Swan Theater
Hip-hop open mic. Here’s a chance for everyone to try on their poetry shoes and strut their stuff. It’s a warm and easygoing event, hosted by the delightful OSF producer Claudia Alick. Community members can perform poetry, music, dance, theater. Whatever tickles your creative fancies. The event opens with featured poet, Samiya Bashir. Get there a little early to sign up to perform.
The theater is at 15 S. Pioneer Street, Ashland
For more information visit:

Ashland Public Library

Wednesday, April 16, 1:00-2:30

Screening of poet William Stafford’s film “Every War has Two Losers.” Elizabeth Hallett will host the event and visitors can read their favoriteStafford poem. This will be an engaging and thought-provoking event.

Tuesday, April 22, 5:00-7:00
Former Oregon Poet Laureate and fabulous speaker, Lawson Inada will provide a poetry discussion and writing workshop. Grab your pens and check it out.
The Ashland library is at 410 Siskiyou Blvd, Ashland

Illahe Gallery & Studio

Thursday, April 17, 7:00
Shaindel Beers, John C. Morrison, Vince Wixon
Visit this lovely space and hear some truly gifted poets.
Illahe Gallery is at 215 Fourth Street, Ashland

Bloomsbury Books
Thursday, April 10, 7:00
Pepper Trail, Gary Lark, Michael Spring

Monday, April 14, 7:00
Jeff Alessandrelli, Lisa Ciccarello

Thursday, April 24, 7:00
Steve Dieffenbacher, Jenny Root, Kathryn Ridall

Tuesday, April 29, 7:00
Don Colburn, Angela Decker

Bloomsbury is at 290 E Main Street, Ashland

Gallerie Karon
Wednesday, April 23, 7:00
Amy MacLennan, Dori Appel, Bruce Barton, Joyce Epstein, Rebecca Gabriel. (So many glittering local poets. This is will be a heck of a night).
Gallerie Karon is at 500 A Street, Ashland

Poets on the Loose
This is when the poets come to you. Poets on the Loose is a friendly group of poetry lovers who offer (willing) strangers a short poem in celebration of this glorious month. If they approach you, don’t be frightened, just smile and say “I’d be delighted to hear a poem” and one of these fine people will share a short verse and be on their way.
If you want to join the poetry crusade, email organizer Cathy DeForest at

Ongoing Poetry
The following offer a year-round venue for poetry and performances.

Northwest Pizza and Pasta Poetry Slam
Tuesday, April 15 7:30
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

Wild Goose
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.

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