Are you an avid poetry lover? Looking to share your poems? Maybe you don’t know anything about poetry? Whatever your knowledge about poetry we have some amazing events! There are opportunities for you to both hear amazing poetry and share some of your own. Special thanks to the Octoberfest Foundation for supporting and bringing poetry to the Fox Cities!

The first event of the week featured Nathan Reid and Beth Spencer. Spencer is a Neenah native who has recently moved to Minnesota. She has been featured in numerous magazines and journals, and has published a book of her poetry, C- in Conduct,Poems from a Semi-Wayward Life. She is currently working on a collaboration with Mexican visual artist, Miguel Caréra. Kavon Cortez-Jones is a Milwaukee-based writer, storyteller, biker, and actor who had been scheduled for this event, however, due to an emergency he was unable to attend. Instead, local poet Nathan Reid presented his work.  They each read for twenty minutes and then there was an open mic for audience members last evening at 7 pm at The Draw.

Get ready for October 11! Ross Gay has been extremely involved in the poetry community. He is the author of three books; Against Which, Bringing the Shovel Down, and Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude. Gay has also been a co-author in several chapbooks and an editor. He is also a founding board member of the Bloomington Community Orchard, a non-profit that strives to help with food security. He will be discussing how delight, joy, and love tie into how we care for the land, ourselves, and each other. Check him out starting at 6 pm at the Warch Campus Center at Lawrence University.

There’s more poetry on October 13! The Sound of the Word: Milwaukee Voices features four poets. Dasha Kelly Hamilton is many things including a nationally-respected writer, artist, and creative consultant. She has presented in a multitude of settings; K-12 schools, colleges, corporate teams, non-profit organizations, correctional institutions, and almost everything in between. She has written numerous features, essays, novels, short stories, and much more. Her most recent novel, Almost Crimson has been called one of the “16 Most Exciting Books by Independent Publishers.” Amanda Reavey has had work in many poetry collections. Her book Marilyn was the winner of the 2017 Best Book Award in Poetry from the Association for Asian American Studies. She is interested in “re-story-ation” and ethno-autobiography. Matt Cook has both had work in anthologies and published his work. His five books of poetry include: In the Small of My Backyard, Eavesdrop Soup, The Unreasonable Slug, Proving Nothing to Anyone and Irksome Particulars. De’Shawn Ewing is a poet and spoken word performer who has touched people both in Wisconsin and across the country. He has performed on the Last Poet and in both regional and national poetry slams. He also teaches writing and expression workshops. Ewing also works with and educates adults on how important it is to partner with each other to accomplish change and action in our community. Come hear these great poets at The Draw starting at 1 pm.