MCPL Programs

Below you will find information about our current programs. Throughout its history, the Montgomery County Poet Laureate has created many opportunities to inspire and educate poets and celebrate the art with readings, events, and workshops.

Caesura Poetry Festival & Retreat

A weekend immersed in Poetry. 

A weekend full of opportunities to hone your craft with workshops from well-known poets and a chance to connect with fellow poets.

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LitLife Poetry Conference


Join Philadelphia Stories editors, the MCPL and top-name poets for the LitLife Virtual Poetry Festival, a day of master classes, discussions, and readings including a celebration of the Montgomery County Poet Laureate and Sandy Crimmins Poetry Prize winners.

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Professional Poetry Critiques

meeting room comfortably decorated with midcentury modern green chairs and a bleached wood sunburst coffee table with a white bookcase in the rear
Critiques by published  poets & Poet Laureates

Booked in a 30 or 60 minute increments. Critiques can be done in-person at Eclipse Center for Creative Community in Lansdale or via Zoom.

Once you submit the form the Executive Director of the Montgomery County Poet Laureate, Joanne Leva, will contact you to schedule the appointment.

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Annual Poet Laureate Competition

Winners Announced in Early April

A Poet Laureate is selected each year who represents excellence in poetry in Montgomery County. The winner is featured in public appearances throughout the year. They also have the opportunity to facilitate a community service project of their own creation.

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First Thursdays at Farleys | Paused

1st Thursday Poetry Readings, 7 pm
Farley’s Bookshop, New Hope  PA

The First Thursday Poetry Reading Series is hosted on a monthly basis at Farley’s Bookshop in New Hope, PA beginning at 7 PM. The readings by the two featured poets are followed by a Question & Answer session.  There is also an open mic for readings by the attendees, limited to one poem per poet to allow for maximum participation. 

Mark your calendar and be sure to bring a poem (yours or that of a favorite poet) to share with the crowd.

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Forgotten Voices

Group Meeting, 1st Saturday, 1 to 3 pm
Workshop, 3rd Saturday, 1 to 3 pm 

Forgotten Voices meets at Eclipse Center for Creative Community.  The Group meeting on the 1st of the month is an opportunity for all ages, abilities, and interests  to gather and enjoy listening to what each member shares. Come and read a poem by a poet you like, a poem you have written, or just come to listen! If you love poetry, please join us!

The Workshop is open to all writers, and participants should bring five copies of one original poem to receive kind and constructive feedback from poets.

Poets' Wordshop

A group of published award-winning poets available for Public Poetry Readings & Events

Originally founded by 2010 Montgomery Poet Laureate Grant Clauser and Executive Director Joanne Leva, current members include Montco Poet Laureates, Chad Frame (2017), Liz Chang (2012), Amy Small McKinney (2011), Doris Ferleger (2009), Sean Webb (2005), Hayden Saunier (past Bucks County Poet Laureate), artist Helen Mirkil, Susan Charkes, and Tom Mallouk.  

If you are interested in booking the Montco Poets’ Wordshop for an event, please fill out the form below.

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no river twice

no river twice
poetry + improvisation

No river twice is a multi-vocal, improvisational poetry reading collaboration in which audience and poets interact to determine the direction of the performance from beginning to end, poem by poem, co-creating a reading that is truly never the same event twice. 

no river twice is an experiment in how to bring playfulness, surprise, and communal participation into the realm of poetry readings. We welcome your feedback, questions, and interest! 

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Past Programs

Full Circle Microgrants

Supporting the Writing Community
with Dave Gaines, 2020 MCPL

* Program was active in 2020-2021*

$250 unrestricted microgrants for writers impacted by COVID-19. Grants will be awarded on a rolling basis beginning mid-summer 2020. For application, testimonials and donation information follow the link below

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Writing from Within

A guided writing circle led by Doris Ferleger, Ph.D. 2009 MCPL, entering new and forgotten inner chambers and landscapes, voices and feelings. The writing circle provided time and space to hone our human gifts of interconnection, contemplation, imagination, exploration and creation.

Laureates from Home

Thursday, April 30 at 7:30 pm

A Virtual Reading from the MCPL to celebrate Poetry Month and welcome our 2020 Poet Laureate David Gaines

Literary Death Match

literary death match

co-created by Adrian Todd Zuniga, marrieds the literary and performative aspects of Def Poetry Jam, rapier-witted quips of American Idol’s judging (without any meanness), and the ridiculousness and hilarity of Double Dare

100Thousand Poets for Change

MCPL collaborated with Souderton Art Jam to participate in the 100TPC global initiative of a day of poetry focused on social justice issues.  This event featured local poets of all ages including students from Souderton Area High School and also spurred the publication of 3 books of poetry from the participating poets.

PWC Free Forums

MCPL collaborated with the Philadelphia Writers’ Conference (PWC) and Musehouse: A Center for the Literary Arts. PWC Free Forums were held at the Musehouse in Philadelphia on the first Thursday of every month, beginning with readings by award-winning PoetryWITS student poets in a free event. 


Abington Wild

Children took over the Treetops Art Gallery in March of 2011, as the Briar Bush Nature Center opened “Abington Wild,” a celebration of local plants and animals as artistically rendered by local school students. MCPL invited students to participate in the nature art show, by submitting poems inspired by native plants and animals.