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2024 Event Schedule

Jax Poetry Fest | April 1-30, 2024

FOUNDED BY HOPE AT HAND

The 9th Annual Jax Poetry Fest will kick off on Monday, April 1, 2024 with in-person and virtual events, performances, and exhibits. Check out our full schedule below filled with workshops, poetry performances and more! A big thank you to our partners and sponsors who make this community event possible. 

2024 Event Schedule

All workshops are provided free to the public unless stated otherwise below

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TUESDAY, APRIL 2: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Beyond Haiku: Three other short forms from around the world, featuring Shutta Crum

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Join Shutta Crum for a unique poetry workshop on the alternative forms of haiku. Most English speakers/writers know of very few short forms other than the Japanese forms of haiku, tanka and haibun. This generative workshop will introduce the chastushka (Russia), the pensee (France), and the tetractys (Greece). We’ll practice a form, then break it to create one’s own version. Handout on other forms will be available.

Shutta Crum has won 8 Royal Palm Literary Awards. She’s had 150+ poems published, been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, authored eighteen traditionally published books for children, and three chapbooks of poetry with Kelsay Books. When You Get Here won a gold RPLA. Meet Me Out There is her latest chapbook.

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 3: PUPS AND POETRY

Poetry & Pups, featuring Knight Krawler, Lovereigns, and Moses West

6:30 pm to 7:00 pm |  Register on Eventbrite

Join us at First Wednesday Art Walk in Downtown Jacksonville on April 3rd to celebrate April's theme, 'Poetry & Pups'. Art Walk is partnering with Hope at Hand and Animal Care and Protective Services for this event. We invite you to support local poets performing outside of The Main Library. Donate or drop off pet supplies for the ACPS shelter at our tent! Supplies include dry dog/cat food, durable toys, leashes, puppy pads, medical supplies, office supplies, and much more. For the full list of supplies needed, please visit iloveartwalk.com

 

Artistic, solid, understanding, honest. These are but a few words that describe KnightKrawler. He realized at a young age he had a desire to write what others did not, would not, and could not say aloud. A published author of three books, “Endless Night,” Another Endless Knight,” and “The Rules of Poetry”, he shares his knowledge and inspires both artists and fans alike. His latest book is a collection of 80 poems and short stories, and in circulation throughout the Jacksonville Public Library system. 

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 3: OPEN MIC NIGHT AT JAX PUBLIC LIBRARY

Open Mic Night at Art Walk Emceed by
LoveReigns 

7:00 pm to 8:30 pm | Jacksonville Public Libray - Main Branch

We welcome all adults (18+) to join us at the Jacksonville Public Library's Main Branch during April's Art Walk for an Open Mic Night emceed by LoveReigns. Come show off your skill or share your latest poetry, while learning about our nonprofit. Then walk around James Weldon Johnson Park to explore the rest of Artwalk!

Taryn "LoveReigns" Wharwood is a poet, writer, author, emcee, motivational speaker, entrepreneur and curator of Dopeness. LoveReigns captivates audiences by finding power in her truth. Her words, her aura, her spirit all scream love...but not without equal amounts of pain. If you know Love, you know yourself. She creatively uses words to reflect you back to you. The beauty, the pain, the good, the bad, the ugly, the peace, the joy, the love... even if you don't believe it yet!

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THURSDAY, APRIL 4: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Ekphrastic Fantastic: Writing in response to art and pop culture, featuring Anna Jacobson

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

In this fast-paced interactive workshop, we'll push the boundaries of the ekphrastic form in reverent and irreverent ways. Come and help redefine what's meant by art and by poetry responding to art

Anna K. Jacobson is a teacher, writer, and storyteller in Jacksonville, Florida. A board member and writing circle facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change, Anna also tells stories on stage with BAB'S LAB and has won multiple story slams. Her poetry has been published both locally and nationally. When she is not chasing the right words, Anna can be found chasing teenagers, dogs, horses, and a perfect brownie recipe.

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THURSDAY, APRIL 4: POETRY IN THE PARK

Spoken Word, featuring Reese the Poet

12:00pm to 1:00pm | James Weldon Johnson Park

I will open with an attention-grabbing interactive piece Detailing certain aspects of the world and challenging us to come together. From there, I will cover a few additional topics through story and reflection.

Reese the Poet is a dynamic speaker and artist that utilizes his words to paint pictures of the world into the hearts of those who hear. He is a Marine Corps veteran. And, just as freedom was once his cause, he now dedicates his life bringing hope to the people.

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SUNDAY, APRIL 7: BLACKOUT POETRY WORKSHOP

Blackout Poetry Workshop, featuring Suni Storm

3:00pm to 4:30pm | Chamblin's Uptown

First Sundays are for expression! Join me for a customized writing experience to strengthen your pen! You're also welcome to just sit in and add to sit in and soak up the gems produced from the course's conversation. Never a dull moment with these exercises, check them! Free to the public and family-friendly!

Suni Storm is a poetess, author, event host and entrepreneur located in Jacksonville, FL by way of Washington, DC. She enjoys a myriad of different hobbies, but she enjoys music the most.

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TUESDAY, APRIL 9: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Muscle Up Your Metaphors, featuring
Shutta Crum

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Words can mean more than what appears on the page. In this workshop we’ll dig deeper into lateral thinking to create stunning metaphors. Whether you write formal poetry or create impromptu performance pieces, the connection we make through metaphor is what grabs readers and listeners by the heart. Let's muscle up your metaphorical poems!

Shutta Crum has won 8 Royal Palm Literary Awards. She’s had 150+ poems published, been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, authored eighteen traditionally published books for children, and three chapbooks of poetry with Kelsay Books. When You Get Here won a gold RPLA. Meet Me Out There is her latest chapbook.

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THURSDAY, APRIL 11: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP 

Poetry as Meditation, featuring Connie Worthy

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

In this workshop, participants will be guided in an exploration of finding inner peace and calm. Participants will be given time to free write and encouraged to share, then the experience will close with a meditation and reading of the collaborative group poem. 

 

Connie Worthy, LMHC, is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and co-founder of Subtle-Arts.com. Her reverence for the written word was developed as an English Major at Rollins College, and her love for its therapeutic use was solidified when she facilitated her first Hope at Hand group as a graduate intern nearly ten years ago. Connie is passionate about helping each person uncover their gifts, recognize their innate value, and find - and use - their voice.

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THURSDAY, APRIL 11: POETRY IN THE PARK

Spoken Word, featuring Bee

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  James Weldon Johnson Park

My spoken word set will include a selection of poems that resonate the Spirit of finding one’s strength, words, encouragement, love and resilience through the eyes of a young artist and poet experiencing this life and becoming more in tune with the divine path.

I am Bee. An artist, poet, event curator, community advocate, lover and human. I’m my journey I seek to share intimate moments in hopes to organically connect with those who seek to hear my words. I am an advocate for supporting artists 24/7 and I do my best to showcase a wide range of talent in the spaces I host.

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FRIDAY, APRIL 12: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Free Verse, featuring Carrie Voigt Schonhoff

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

We will discuss the definition of free verse, I will share some of my poetry, and then the participants will be encouraged to write their own poem and share with the group. 

Carrie Voigt Schonhoff has self-published two books of poems: “The Liminal Space” and “The End of the Beginning”. She addresses the importance of healing, moving on, and being ready to face new beginnings. She believes we can heal by connecting and understanding one another on a deeper level through poetry.

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SATURDAY, APRIL 13: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Narrative Poetry, featuring Suni Storm

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Join Suni as she shares the basics of narrative poetry and the correlation of the art of griot storytelling.

Suni Storm is a poetess, author, event host and entrepreneur located in Jacksonville, FL by way of Washington, DC. She enjoys a myriad of different hobbies, but she enjoys music the most.

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MONDAY, APRIL 15: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Beyond Haiku: Three other short forms from around the world, featuring Shutta Crum

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Join Shutta Crum for a unique poetry workshop on the alternative forms of haiku. Most English speakers/writers know of very few short forms other than the Japanese forms of haiku, tanka and haibun. This generative workshop will introduce the chastushka (Russia), the pensee (France), and the tetractys (Greece). We’ll practice a form, then break it to create one’s own version. Handout on other forms will be available.

Shutta Crum has won 8 Royal Palm Literary Awards. She’s had 150+ poems published, been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, authored eighteen traditionally published books for children, and three chapbooks of poetry with Kelsay Books. When You Get Here won a gold RPLA. Meet Me Out There is her latest chapbook.

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 17: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Senryu, featuring Lynn Skapyak Harlin

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Senryū: Haiku’s Witty Relative. Written in Japanese, both are seventeen syllables and unrhymed. The difference is that the subject of the haiku is nature, while the subject of a senryu is human nature. The haiku customarily pivots with a sudden awareness, while the senryu is more of a snapshot. The scholar Makoto Ueda, said the Senryu poet “keenly studies various aspects of the human condition and reports his findings in a humorous way.”

Come learn a little history of this form and write as many Senryu as time permits.

Lynn Skapyak Harlin’s first published poem, “War Waste,” appeared in Time, (December 7, 1970). Her poems have appeared in numerous literary magazines and in three chap books, Press One for More Options, Real Women Drive Trucks (1997), and Age Changes (2017) and in two collections Twists and Turns (2019) and All Shapes and Sizes (2022).

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THURSDAY, APRIL 18: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Collaborative Poetry to Harness Inner Strength, featuring Connie Worthy

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

In this workshop, participants will be guided in an exploration of finding and sensing their own inner strength. Participants will be given time to free write and encouraged to share, then the experience will close with a meditation and reading of the collaborative group poem. 

Connie Worthy, LMHC, is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and co-founder of Subtle-Arts.com. Her reverence for the written word was developed as an English Major at Rollins College, and her love for its therapeutic use was solidified when she facilitated her first Hope at Hand group as a graduate intern nearly ten years ago. Connie is passionate about helping each person uncover their gifts, recognize their innate value, and find - and use - their voice.

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THURSDAY, APRIL 18: POETRY IN THE PARK

Spoken Word, featuring Rashad Hawkins

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  James Weldon Johnson Park

Join me for a stream-of-consciousness style poetry session with lots of vulnerability, lots of love, and lots of laughs.

Rashad Hawkins is an author, spoken word poet, filmmaker, freelance writer, and businessman based out of Jacksonville, Florida. He is a co-host of the What’s In A Verse Open Mic Show at Rain Dogs. He is an alumnus of Douglas Anderson School of the Arts and Bethune Cookman University, where he received a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications. His works; Women and Other Catastrophes, Pendulum, and Making Noise are all available on Amazon.

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FRIDAY, APRIL 19: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Advice on How to Share Your Poetry with the World, featuring Carrie Voigt Schonhoff

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

In this session, we will discuss ways to share poetry: editing (or retaining an editor), self-publishing, submitting to publications and social media. I have applicable experience in all of these categories that I can share with the participants.

Carrie Voigt Schonhoff has self-published two books of poems: “The Liminal Space” and “The End of the Beginning”. She addresses the importance of healing, moving on, and being ready to face new beginnings. She believes we can heal by connecting and understanding one another on a deeper level through poetry.

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SATURDAY, APRIL 20: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

From Free Verse to Form, featuring Brooks Decker

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Participants will learn how to gather their thoughts to create a free verse poem, and how to use their free verse to create a structured form.

 

Brooks is a writer, artist, and mental health professional in Jacksonville FL. She released her first chapbook, Purge & Bloom, in October of 2023.

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SUNDAY, APRIL 21: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Gothic Poetry, featuring Michelle Lizet Flores

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Explore the strange and unusual as we bring a little autumnal macabre to spring. In this generative poetry workshop, we will engage in active writing exercises that push us to find beauty in the grotesque and romance in decay.

Michelle Lizet Flores is a graduate of the FSU and NYU creative writing programs. She currently works as a teacher and co-hosts the What's in a Verse Poetry Open Mic in Jacksonville, FL. She has previously been published in magazines and journals such as The Miami Rail, Chircú Journal, and Travel Latina. A finalist for the Juan Felipe Herrera Award for Poetry, she is the author of the chapbooks Cuentos from the Swamp and Memoria, as well as the picture book, Carlito the Bat Learns to Trick or Treat. Her short fiction can be found in the anthology, Places We Build in the Universe through Flowersong Press. Her first full-length collection of poetry, Invasive Species, is available through Finishing Line Press. Find out more at michellelizetflores.com.

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SUNDAY, APRIL 21: BLACKOUT POETRY WORKSHOP

Blackout Poetry Workshop, featuring Suni Storm

3:00pm to 4:30pm | Chamblin's Uptown

First Sundays are for expression! Join me for a customized writing experience to strengthen your pen! You're also welcome to just sit in and add to sit in and soak up the gems produced from the course's conversation. Never a dull moment with these exercises, check them! Free to the public and family-friendly!

Suni Storm is a poetess, author, event host and entrepreneur located in Jacksonville, FL by way of Washington, DC. She enjoys a myriad of different hobbies, but she enjoys music the most.

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 24: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Other Nations: Writing about Animals, featuring Anna Jacobson

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Taking its structure from American writer and naturalist Henry Beston's view of the animal world as fully equal to the human world in complexity, beauty, and dignity, this workshop will encourage writers to consider the role of animals in our lives and writing.

Anna K. Jacobson is a teacher, writer, and storyteller in Jacksonville, Florida. A board member and writing circle facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change, Anna also tells stories on stage with BAB'S LAB and has won multiple story slams. Her poetry has been published both locally and nationally. When she is not chasing the right words, Anna can be found chasing teenagers, dogs, horses, and a perfect brownie recipe.

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THURSDAY APRIL 25: POETRY IN THE PARK

Spoken Word, featuring CagedBird

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  James Weldon Johnson Park

CagedBird with an "ed" at the end because we are no longer caged, we are free.

CagedBird is a poet, artist, businessman, father and activist.

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SATURDAY, APRIL 27: OPEN MIC

Open Mic with Taryn "LoveReigns" 

12:30 pm to 2:30 pm  |  Riverside Arts Market

We invite the community and our visitors to celebrate National Poetry Month by listening to or participating in the open mic on our River Stage. The Riverside Arts Market celebrates all kinds of arts in the Northeast Florida region; from visual arts to culinary arts and the performing arts. We often have authors and occasionally poets as vendors within the market, but this open mic will be the first time we are bringing the literary arts to the River Stage! We would like to remind any participating poets that this is an all-ages event so themes or poems should be selected with that in mind. 

Taryn "LoveReigns" Wharwood is a poet, writer, author, emcee, motivational speaker, entrepreneur and curator of Dopeness. LoveReigns captivates audiences by finding power in her truth. Her words, her aura, her spirit all scream love...but not without equal amounts of pain. If you know Love, you know yourself. She creatively uses words to reflect you back to you. The beauty, the pain, the good, the bad, the ugly, the peace, the joy, the love... even if you don't believe it yet!

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SUNDAY, APRIL 28: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Astrology Poetry, featuring Michelle Lizet Flores

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

What better inspiration than the celestial bodies of our birth? In this generative poetry workshop, we will use our big three (sun, moon, and rising) to craft poems rich in imagery and allusion.

Michelle Lizet Flores is a graduate of the FSU and NYU creative writing programs. She currently works as a teacher and co-hosts the What's in a Verse Poetry Open Mic in Jacksonville, FL. She has previously been published in magazines and journals such as The Miami Rail, Chircú Journal, and Travel Latina. A finalist for the Juan Felipe Herrera Award for Poetry, she is the author of the chapbooks Cuentos from the Swamp and Memoria, as well as the picture book, Carlito the Bat Learns to Trick or Treat. Her short fiction can be found in the anthology, Places We Build in the Universe through Flowersong Press. Her first full-length collection of poetry, Invasive Species, is available through Finishing Line Press. Find out more at michellelizetflores.com.

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TUESDAY, APRIL 30: VIRTUAL POETRY WORKSHOP

Sense Connections: Using Your Five Senses to Create Imagery, featuring Lynn Skapyak Harlin

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm  |  Register on Eventbrite

Come join me and paint a picture with words. Use sensory details in imagery to evoke a sensory experience in the reader. Through a guided exercise you will create a poem that plays to the reader’s senses. You’ll provide them with sights, sounds, tastes, smells, touch and show how they connect to memories.

 

Lynn Skapyak Harlin’s first published poem, “War Waste,” appeared in Time, (December 7, 1970). Her poems have appeared in numerous literary magazines and in three chap books, Press One for More Options, Real Women Drive Trucks (1997), and Age Changes (2017) and in two collections Twists and Turns (2019) and All Shapes and Sizes (2022)

PRESENTED BY

IN COLLABORATION WITH

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THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

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