Programs by Genre - Poetry

10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
Louisiana Poets, Part I

Catharine Savage Brosman, A Memory of Manaus: Poems
Biljana Obradović, Incognito: Poems
Jennifer Reeser, Fleur-de-Lis
Mark Yakich, The Dangerous Book of Poetry for Planes
with Mona Lisa Saloy, moderator

11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
Girl after Girl after Girl

Nicole Cooley with Peter Cooley, moderator

11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.
State Capitol Building, House Committee Room 1
Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse

The call for submissions for Nasty Women Poets: An Anthology of Subversive Verse went out shortly after Election Day 2016 with a deadline of Inauguration Day 2017: “Now is the time for all nasty women poets to come to the aid of their country!” Editors Grace Bauer (a former New Orleans resident) and Julie Kane (the 2011-2013 Louisiana Poet Laureate) were seeking “poems by and about women defying limitations and ladylike expectations; women refusing to be ‘nice girls’ . . .” Over 1500 poems poured in over the next eight weeks from women poets across the country and around the world, of which just over 200 were selected for the anthology. This Louisiana Book Festival reading will feature 16 nasty women poets from Louisiana whose bold and memorable work made it into this landmark collection. Particpating poets include editor Kane with Nordette Adams, Anne Babson, Stacey Balkun, Katie Bickham, Gina Ferrara, Nancy C. Harris, Ashley Mace Havird, Christine Holbert, Martha McFerren, Biljana Obradović, Melinda Palacio, Alison Pelegrin, Valentine Pierce, Sheryl St. Germain, and Andy Young.

11:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
It’s Good Weather for Fudge: Conversing with Carson McCullers

Sue Brannan Walker imagines a friendship and conversation with McCullers. The past becomes the present in this poem that ranges from love and war to sickness and health, fudge and friendship.

12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
A Conversation with Louisiana State Poet Laureate Jack Bedell

Jack Bedell with Peter Cooley, moderator

1:15 p.m. to 2 p.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
Spirits of the Gods

Poems by John Warner Smith inspired by the artwork of Dennis Paul Williams.

2:15 p.m. to 3 p.m.
State Library, Fifth Floor Capitol View Room
Louisiana Poets, Part II

Gina Ferrara, Fitting the Sixth Finger
Andrea Panzeca, Rusted Bells and Daisy Baskets
Cassie Pruyn, Lena: Poems
Clare L. Martin, Seek the Holy Dark
with Jack Bedell, moderator

3:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.
Capitol Park Welcome Center, Meeting Room
WordPlay's Freshhhh Heat Teen Open Mic and Poetry Slam

Freshhhh Heat is a monthly open mic and poetry slam put on by Forward Arts' WordPlay Writing Project for teens ages 13 to 19. The poetry slam is a competition where poets are judged on a scale from zero to 10 on the merit of the writing and performance of their original works. The open mic is an opportunity for poets to perform in a noncompetitive format.


Book-loving volunteers are essential to the Louisiana Book Festival's success. Whether it's escorting authors, guiding visitors, selling refreshments, working with children in the Young Readers Pavilion or other fun and rewarding assignments, the Louisiana Book Festival wants you to join the volunteer team.

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