Central-Fox Valley Region

Appleton, Oshkosh, Fond du Lac

The Draw, Feather & Bone Art Gallery, 800 S. Lawe Street, Appleton
Third Mondays | Poetry Readings. We’re thrilled to partner with The Feather & Bone Art Gallery inside The Draw – Appleton’s new Community Arts Space at 800 S. Lawe Street. We’re still near the heart of the city but now down in the flats, south on College Avenue (near Lawrence University). 

We’re cooking up a great line-up of readers for the remainder of 2017, including: 

  • April 17 -- Shoshauna Shy & Marilyn Taylor

    Shoshauna Shy is the author of What the Postcard Didn't Say, a full length collection that won an Outstanding Award from the Wisconsin Library Association, four other collections, and a hot-off-the-press chapbook titled The Splash of Easy Laughter published by Aldrich Press, an imprint of Kelsay Books. Shoshauna is also a flash fiction author, and works for the Wisconsin Humanities Council in Madison which creates and supports programs that use history, culture and literature to strengthen community life. When not there, she is running a cat care business - which lends itself to quiet time for writing.

    Marilyn L. Taylor, former Poet Laureate of the state of Wisconsin and the city of Milwaukee, is the author of eight previous poetry collections.  Her award-winning poems and essays have appeared in many anthologies and journals, including Poetry, American Scholar, Able Muse, Light, and Measure. She also served for five years as a regular poetry columnist for The Writer magazine and is currently a co-editor for Third Wednesday and Verse-Virtual poetry journals.  Taylor recently moved to Madison, Wisconsin, where she continues to write and teach.
  • ay 15 -- Nathan Reid and Ollie LeFlore
  • Jun 19 -- Mary Strong Jackson
  • Jul 17 -- Cristina Norcross and Lisa Vihos
  • Aug 21 -- Barb Germiat and Peter Sherrill
  • Sep 18 -- Georgia Ressmeyer and Marilyn Windau

For more information on the Appleton WFOP Poetry Series, contact Sarah Gilbert at pses@sbcglobal.net.  And stay tuned for additional reminders of other great happenings in Northeast Wisconsin.

Oshkosh Caramel Crisp & Cafe, Oshkosh
4th Tuesdays, 6:15 pm at the Oshkosh Caramel Crisp and Café. Featured reader; open mic will follow. Room is toward the back of the café. Come early and treat yourself to coffee or goodies to enjoy during the reading which begins promptly at 6:15; Caramel Crisp closes at 7:30. For further information contact Kay Sanders at rksanders42@gmail.com or Mandi Isaacson at mandiisaacson@gmail.com.

  • Apr 25 -- Marilyn L Taylor

    Marilyn L. Taylor is the former Poet Laureate of the state of Wisconsin and the author of seven poetry collections, the newest of which, Step on a Crack, was published in 2016 by White Violet Press (Kelsay Books).  Her poems and essays have appeared in many anthologies and journals, including Poetry, Mezzo Cammin, Light, Able Muse, and the Random House anthology titled Villanelles.  She currently lives in Madison, where she continues to spend much of her time writing, teaching, and hobnobbing with some of the extraordinary poets who also call Wisconsin home.

For further information you may contact Kay Sanders at rksanders42@gmail.com or Mandi Isaacson at mandiisaacson@gmail.com.

THELMA, Fond du Lac
Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts (THELMA) hosts poetry events. FREE event begins with reading in THELMA’s Café 1906 at 51 Sheboygan St., Fond du Lac. Then an open mic will follow for any others who would like to read. Cash bar will be available. www.thelmaarts.org. Tel. 920.921.5410.


Sheboygan, Milwaukee, Racine

Boswell Book Company, 2559 N. Downer Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53211
Tel. (414) 332-1181. General inquiries: info@boswellbooks.com

  • Apr 18, 7pm - Rebecca Dunham, author of Cold Pastoral: Poems, Milkweed Editions, $16.00, 9781571314789

    Rebecca Dunham is the Creative Writing Program Coordinator and the Professor of English at UWM. Dunham is also the author of three previous books of poetry: Glass Armonica, winner of Milkweed Editions' 2013 Lindquist & Vennum Prize; The Flight Cage; and The Miniature Room, winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize. She has been the recipient of an NEA Fellowship and was the 2005-6 Jay C. and Ruth Halls Fellow in Poetry at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing.
  • May 24, 7pm -- Stephen Anderson, author of In the Garden of Angels and Demons, Milkweed Editions, $17.00, 9781945752636

    Stephen Anderson is an award-winning poet/writer who resides in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. His work has appeared in Southwest Review, Verse  Wisconsin, and Free Verse. He is the author of Montezuma Resurrected and Other Poems and The Silent Tango of Dreams. His most recent chapbook is 2015’s Navigating in the Sun. Many of Anderson’s poems have been featured on Milwaukee Public Radio’s Lake Effect, and several of his poems of included in the collection Portals and Piers. In the summer of 2013, six of his poems formed the text for a chamber music composition entitled The Privileged Secrets of the Arch performed by two members of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, in addition to two other musicians and an opera singer. Event contact: Stephen Anderson, stephen.anderson724@gmail.com
  • May 27, 7pm - Aja Monet, author of My Mother Was a Freedom Fighter, Haymarket Books, $16.00, 9781608467679

    Aja  M onet is a Caribbean-American poet, performer, and educator from Brooklyn. She has been awarded the Andrea Klein Willison Prize for Poetry, and the Nuyorican Poet’s Café Grand Slam title. She is the author of ¬The Black Unicorn Sings and the co-editor, with Saul Williams, of Chorus: A Literary Mixtape. She lives in Little Haiti, Miami, where she is a co-founder of Smoke Signals Studio and dedicates her time merging arts and culture in community organizing with the Dream Defenders and the Community Justice Project. Contact: Jim Plank, jim@haymarketbooks.org, 773-583-7884
  • Jun 13, 7pm - Margaret Rozga, author of Pestiferous Questions: A Life in Poems, Lit Fest Press, $16.95, 9781943170227

    Margaret Rozga is a civil rights activist, poet, playwright, Professor Emerita of English at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha, and the author of Justice Freedom Herbs, Though I Haven’t Been to Baghdad, and 200 Nights and One Day. She served as managing editor of the chapbook anthology Turn Up the Volume: Poems about the States of Wisconsin. Publisher contact: Jane Carman, festivalwriter@gmail.com, 309-368-7408

For more of Boswell upcoming events, please visit www.boswellbooks.com/upcoming-events for the latest info.

Woodland Pattern Bookcenter, 720 E Locust St in Riverwest, Milwaukee
Tel. (414) 263-5001. For more information about their events, contact Michael Wendt, michaelw@woodlandpattern.org
If you love poetry, you’re probably already paying attention to Woodland Pattern’s upcoming events page. If you don’t already have the site bookmarked, it’s www.woodlandpattern.org/events/. Among their other great upcoming programs, make note of a special reading with Mark Doty at the Park East Hotel, 916 State Street, Milwaukee. General admission tickets are $10; $5 for students.

  • Apr 21, 7pm, Free - Jay Wright, author of Disorientations: Groundings
  • Apr 22, 7pm, Free - Gozo Yoshimasu, Sawako Nakayasu, and Kyoko Yoshida
  • May 3, 7pm, Free - Students from the Milwaukee High School of the Arts 
  • May 10, 7pm, Free - Lindsay Daigle, author of The Small Disasters LP
  • May 16, 7pm, Free - Mai Der Vang, author of Afterland, Winner of the the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets
  • May 19, 7pm, Free - Duriel Harris, author of Amnesiac and Drag
  • May 21, 2pm, Free - Sarah Rosenblatt, author of Where We Are in This Story
  • May 25, 7pm, Free - Urban Echo Poets

Linneman's, 1001 E. Locust Street, Milwaukee
Poets Monday at Linneman’s, 1001 E. Locust St., Milwaukee, continues its uninterrupted run of excellent featured readers and open mike opportunities every Monday. Doors open at 7:30. Open mike at 8 pm. Featured reader at 9 pm. $3 cover charge. Upcoming featured readers.

Miramar Theater, 2844 N. Oakland Ave., Milwaukee
Every Tuesday there is an acoustic open mike. All ages are welcome. Performers can do poetry, comedy, music or even magic. $2 cover. The performer  gets an audio CD of his or her performance. Sign-up starts at 7:30pm. 14 performers per night. Show starts at 8:00pm. 

Urban Ecology Center, UWM, Milwaukee
Fourth Thursdays, 5:30 - 9pm, Grassroots Open Mike. Lyrical Sanctuary is UWM’s monthly open mic night, featuring standout spoken word artists, live music and art, and YOU! For the past 14 years, Lyrical Sanctuary has brought students and community members together to share their passion for poetry, music, art, and creative self-expression. Prior to each performance, the featured artist leads a creative writing workshop open to anyone willing to put their pen to the page. Find dates and info here: http://uwm.edu/studentinvolvement/more/sociocultural/lyrical/

Lyrical Sanctuary, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee
Lyrical Sanctuary is UWM’s monthly open mic night, featuring standout spoken word artists, live music and art, and YOU! For the past 14 years, Lyrical Sanctuary has brought students and community members together to share their passion for poetry, music, art, and creative self-expression. Prior to each performance, the featured artist leads a creative writing workshop open to anyone willing to put their pen to the page. Find dates and info here: http://uwm.edu/studentinvolvement/more/sociocultural/lyrical/


Wisconsin Rapids, Wausau, Stevens Point

Coloma Hotel, Coloma
Second Wednesdays, 7 pm: Original Voice, a free event held at the Coloma Hotel, 132 Main St.  The evening starts with a featured guest artist who shares ideas and inspirations and presents a half hour or so of his/her own work. This is an opportunity for creative people to introduce poems, books, chapbooks, or CDs or to try out some new work on an audience. Following the featured guest, the microphone is available to anyone who wants to take part. Both unseasoned and experienced performers are urged to make brief presentations––two or three of their own poems or songs, a short essay, or a couple of pages of prose. Original Voice takes a break in December and January. For more information or to sign up to read in 2016, contact Barb Cranford at (608) 564-7701 or Julie Eger at (920) 787-7663

Unitarian Universalist Church, 504 Grant Street, Downtown Wausau
Open Mic. Enter the church through the side door next to the parking lot and take the stairs or the elevator to the second floor meeting room.  An open mic will follow readings.  Bring your favorite poems and join in the fun of reading poetry.  For additional information contact:  Elmae Passineau at 715-845-2061 or Kathy Serley at kserley@dwave.net.

  • Apr 27 -- Robert Nordstrom

An award winning poet, Robert's collection, The Sacred Monotony of Breath (Prolific Press 2015), received a 2015 award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers and his poem "Old Lovers" won the Hal Prize in 2014. He writing has appeared in many publications including Verse Wisconsin and Rosebud.

Marathon County Public Library, 300 North First St., Wausau
econd Thursdays, 6–8 pm: Poetry open mic. The first hour will offer open mic to all poets and the second hour will feature guest poets. The event is free, and no prior registration is required. For additional information call 715-261-7230.


Rhinelander, Eagle River, Green Bay

Untitledtown Book & Author Festival, Green Bay, Various Locations - April 28 - 30
Includes poetry events on Sunday, April 30. There will be a panel discussion featuring current and past Poet Laureates of Wisconsin Karla Huston, Kimberly Blaeser, Bruce Dethlefsen and Denise Sweet. 11:00 - 12:15 at Titletown Brewing Company. Learn more at: untitledtown.org

  • Apr 30 -- Poet Laureate Panel Discussion

The Reader's Loft, 2069 Central Ct, Suite 44, Green Bay, WI 54311, (920) 406-0200
HOTT Poetry Reading Series, The Reader's Loft, readersloft.com. Third Thursday Most Months, 5:30 pm. Learn more at www.houseofthetomato.com or torigw@twc.com

  • Apr 20 -- Tom Erickson & C Kubasta
  • May 18 -- Melissa Range

Jul 29 -- Summer Poetry Festival (Saturday, 1-4pm)

POETS: Steve & Jeanie Tomasko, Michael Kriesel, Sylvia Bowersox, Cathryn Cofell, Bruce Dethlefsen
More details to follow!

  • Sep 14 -- James Botsford & Gregory Galbraith
  • Oct 19 -- Christine Swanberg
  • Nov 16 -- Mark Falcone & Nathan Reid

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County, Ephraim
2nd Wednesdays, 7 pm: The Dickinson Poetry Series features a reading by a local or regional poet followed by an open mic and reception. The public is welcome, and admission is free. UUF, 10341 Highway 42 in Ephraim.  For more information visit uufdc.org or call 920-854-7559


Superior, Hayward, Ashland

Minocqua Library, Minocqua

  • Apr 25th poetry reading and open mic to celebrate National Poetry Month

    Nine women from the area’s PaperBirch Poets plan to read selections from their own work or that of a favorite writer. Readers include: Elaine Strite, Beth Tornes, Elaine Hohensee, Michelle Zanoni, Shannon Thielman, Jan Bosman, Kim Wensaut, and the two vice presidents, Nancy Austin and Andrée Graveley.

Farmstead Creamery Cafe, Hayward
Farmstead Creamery Cafe Presents Pizza Farm Thursdays Spoken Word Arts and Open Mic with Stone Oven Pizzas
11077 Fullington Rd, Hayward, WI 54843. Tel: (715) 462-3453. Check northstarhomestead.com for map and more information.
Thursdays in July and Augustfrom 5 to 8 pm. Featured readers at 7:00 p.m.; open mic at 8:00 p.m.

South Central

Wisconsin Dells, Lake Geneva, Platteville, Madison

Madison Central Library, 201 W. Mifflin, Madison
First Thursdays 7 pm: Bubbler Poetry Open Mike. Poetry mini-workshop at 6:30pm.

  • Apr 3 -- 7 pm (Room 301) -- The Program in Creative Writing presents graduating MFA candidates in poetry Alisha Dietzman, Sean Patrick Mulroy, Thiahera Nurse, Carolyn Orosz, and Leslie Sainz

Union South Varsity Hall, 1308 West Dayton, Madison

  • Apr 3 -- 7pm -- Margaret Atwood, Poet and Novelist

Mother Fool's Coffeehouse, Madison
First Fridays, 8 pm: Madtown Poetry Open Mic. MC Ron Czerwien; signup 7 pm. Mother Fool's Coffeehouse, 1101 Williamson St., Madison. Questions call 255-4730.

Goodman Community Center, Madison
Fourth Fridays, 7–9:30 pm: The Word Power! Open Mic Slam Series will now happen every fourth Friday of the month in the Lussier LOFT here at the Goodman Community Center. The event is free.

Genna's Lounge, Madison
Third Saturdays, 7 pm: Urban Spoken Word Slam and open mike at Genna’s Lounge at 105 W. Main St. with house band MTrane Plus. Poetry slam is the art—and sport—of competitive poetry reading. Five judges are picked at random from the audience, and performers are judged based on content, delivery, form and originality. Each poet has three minutes, and cannot use props, costumes or music; it’s just the voice and the mic. Contact David at urbanspokenword@gmail.com for more information. 

West Central

Prairie du Chien, La Crosse, Eau Claire

L.E. Phillips Memorial Library, Eau Claire
2nd Tuesdays 7–8:15 pm: Writers Read at the L.E. Phillips Memorial Library, 400 Eau Claire St, Eau Claire
(715) 839-1648