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2016 Massachusetts Poetry Festival


America’s Top Prize-Winning Poets Converge in Salem, MA for the Three-Day Mass Poetry Festival. 

Salem, MA, March xxx, 2016—The 8th Massachusetts Poetry Festival brings American’s most admired poets from across the country to a celebration of Massachusetts’ lively contemporary poetry scene—Friday, April 29 – Sunday, May 1, 2016 in downtown Salem, MA. 

Throughout the weekend, we spotlight the following highly acclaimed poets: former N.Y. Poet Laureate Marie Howe, 2015 Pulitzer-prize recipient Gregory Pardlo, Mark Doty, Sandra Beasley, Martha Collins, Edward Hirsch, Ada Limón, David Rivard, Charles Simic, and Ocean Vuong.

The first weekend of May, Salem becomes the epicenter of contemporary American poetry, offering rare opportunities to hear the nation’s best poets read and discuss their work in intimate and engaging forums. Highlights include:

Friday evening, three of the finest poets writing today: the award-winning Sandra Beasley, Ocean Vuong, and Martha Collins, 7:30 –9 p.m.in the Atrium of the Peabody Essex Museum.

Saturday afternoon, we feature Gregory Pardlo, the 2015 winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry. He will read alongside Ada Limón, whose book, Bright Dead Things, was a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award in Poetry. 

Saturday eveningwe feature former U.S. New York Poet Laureate Marie Howe and National Book Award winner Mark Doty. These two writers demonstrate the extraordinary possibilities of poetry to reveal the personal and political experiences of American life. 7:30–9 p.m. at the First Universalist Church of Salem. 

The Mass Poetry Festival offers nearly 100 poetry readings and workshops, a small press and literary fair, panels, poetry slams, and open-air readings. Panel topics range broadly from The State of Poetry, poetry and gender, book publishing, poetry and Asian art, to the Common Threads Reading, where contemporary poets with Massachusetts ties discuss their literary heirs. More than 150 poets will engage with thousands of New Englanders. Admission is $20, and $7 for students and seniors; an additional $10 service fee for all workshops. 

See more video highlights of the 2015 Mass Poetry Festival here

Visit www.masspoetry.org for more information, or contact January O’Neil at 978-542-2376.

2015 Photo Highlights

2015 Mass Poetry Festival