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Philly Loves Poetry

by Faye Chevalier

This April, Philadelphia’s Moonstone Arts Center, in celebration of the 20th anniversary of their acclaimed reading series Poetry Ink, presents their biggest event to date: the first annual Philly Loves Poetry Fest, a celebration of Philadelphia’s vibrant literary and social history. 

The four-day festival, running from April 14-17, promises to be a rollicking weekend in celebration of all things poetic, with readings, workshops, open mics, and art exhibitions featuring five of Philadelphia’s most renowned poets: Sonia Sanchez, Afaa M. Weaver, Gregory Corbin, Amy Small-McKinney, and John Balaban. At the very peak of the Fest is the 20th annual Poetry Ink reading, a seven-hour poetry-marathon featuring works by one-hundred different writers from all genres, styles, and backgrounds, hosted by the Brandywine Workshop and featuring a special presentation by Philadelphia Poet Laureate, Yolanda Wisher. 

A full detail of the festival, a list of the featured artists and sponsoring organizations, and a calendar of events can be found here. To register for an event or workshop, a $100 (or more!) donation to the Philly Loves Poetry Fest’s Indiegogo gets you a pass to all events. Can’t be around for the whole weekend? Individual tickets and passes for events can be purchased here, while events on Sunday, April 17 are free and open to the public.     

Since its inception in 1981, the Moonstone Arts Center has stood as a bastion of the arts—from hosting reading series, to running chapbook contests, to organizing workshops on the hidden histories of Philadelphia, Moonstone Arts dedicates itself to a vision of the arts in Philadelphia as a reflection of the diverse and dynamic nature of the peoples, cultures, visions, and histories that make up Philadelphia as we know it. To Larry Robin, founder of the Moonstone Arts Center, art and artistic expression lies in the liminal space at the intersection of the individual and their social environment—in this way, says Robin, “the universal is in the specific.” You can help the Philly Loves Poetry Fest celebrate the poetic in the potential by donating to their Indiegogo, liking Moonstone Arts on Facebook, or following them on Twitter.

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