Sonnet suppliers, haiku hounds, poem purveyors, limerick lovers and ballad buffs unite! April marks National Poetry Month, and in keeping with a vibrant and culturally diverse city, Atlanta is brimming with a bevy of bar halls, bookstores and boutiques where bright eyed bards can catch their big break. From sublime rhymes to abstract anthems, poetry is the name of the game at the following events and locales throughout the Atlanta area.
Callanwolde Fine Arts Center
980 Briarcliff Road N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30306
Historic Callanwolde hosts poetry readings on the second Wednesday of each month. On April 10, 2013, Callanwolde plays host to a reading of “The Southern Poetry Anthology” by editor William Wright, and on May 8, 2013, Callanwolde welcomes poets Jenny Sadre-Orafai and Eileen Stratidakis for readings of their work. Aspiring artists will want to mark the following dates on their calendars: on June 12, July 10 and August 14, Callanwolde hosts Open Mic Poetry Reading Nights. Poets are invited to call (404) 872-5338 x 228, and the first 10 will be selected to read for five minutes each for any given Open Mic Night. All events begin at 8 p.m. and general admission is just $5.
At the Robert C. Williams Paper Museum
500 10th St. N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30309
As part of the Poetry at Tech series, the Kress Auditorium plays host to An Evening of Poetry on April 4 featuring poets Robert Wrigley and Kim Addonizio. This event is free and open to the public. No tickets or reservations are required for admission. The event begins at 7:30 p.m. Dates for the 2013-2014 series have yet to be announced, but visiting poets slated to perform include Stephen Dunn, Terrance Hayes, Anne Marie Macari and Afaa Michael Weaver. Registration is now closed for the spring 2013 workshops, but prospective poets should check the website regularly for future workshops and Poetry at Tech events.
Emory Poetry Council
Emory University Bookstore
1390 Oxford Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
Emory University welcomes poets from all over the country to converge upon the “stage” on the ground floor of the Emory Bookstore as part of its What’s New in Poetry? series. April 4, 2013 will feature readings by poets Mark Wallace, K. Lorraine Graham, Jessica Fiorini and Karen Weiser; April 18, 2013 will showcase the work of Elaine Equi and Jerome Sala; and May 3, 2013 will highlight the talents of poets Danielle Pafunda, Shanna Compton and Jennifer L. Knox. All three events are free and open to the public. Readings begin at 8 p.m.
Related: Best Spoken Word Venues in Atlanta
Poetry Writing Contest
“A Celebration of Today’s Writers”
No one ever said poets had to be stodgy bearded men in reading glasses with leather patches on the sleeves of their sportcoats and a pipe dangling from their mouths. Poets come in all shapes, sizes and ages. Creative Communication hosts three poetry contests per year that are geared toward student writers in Kindergarten through 12th grade from all over Canada and the United States – that includes would-be writers from right here in Atlanta. Deadlines to enter and have their work considered for prizes and publication are April 11, August 15 and December 5, 2013.
215 Sycamore St.
Decatur, GA 30030
It’s never too early for parents to foster a love for both the written and spoken word in their children. To that end, the Decatur Library hosts Toddler Time & Rhymes for two-year-olds on Mondays (4/1, 4/8, 4/15 and 4/22) from 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and Music Time & Rhymes for babies up to 12 months on Tuesdays (4/2, 4/9, 4/16 and 4/23) from 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Classes are open to the first 25 participants and include age-appropriate nursery rhymes, stories, fingerplays, action rhymes and songs. Slightly older Decatur-based poets (18+) may want to head over to the Harbor Bar and Fish House at 129 Church Street on April 25, 2013 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. to discuss their favorite poem in honor of National Poetry Month as part of the Dekalb County Public Library’s Pub Fiction Series.
Kasie Bolling is a freelance writer covering all things Atlanta. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.