The second annual Open Mouth Poetry Retreat will take place from May 31 through June 3, 2019, with faculty members Franny Choi and Nate Marshall. We will accept applications November 15, 2018 to February 15, 2019.
This retreat features generative workshops and seeks to build community around poetry in an environment that fosters writing. We seek participants in this residency who will share our vision that inclusivity, equity, and community are necessary elements of a poet’s life.
We offer room and board for up to 26 poets, established or emerging, who have a project they wish to devote time to for further honing and development. The site of the Open Mouth Poetry Retreat is the Mt. Sequoyah Retreat and Conference Center, a nearly century-old establishment located at the highest point in Fayetteville, AR, providing exceptional views of the city and wealth of natural beauty. The space allows for quiet and privacy, as well as easy walking or driving access to downtown Fayetteville. And there’s a pool!
Meals and housing are included with tuition, which is $350. Limited scholarships will be available.
An application fee of $8 helps support this programming, and can be waived for anyone for whom that makes an application prohibitive. Not sure what to expect? Check out photos from last year's retreat.
2019 Open Mouth Poetry Retreat
with Franny Choi and Nate Marshall
Applications for the retreat are now closed. Thank you!
Open Mouth Reading Series is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose mission is to increase access to, and engagement with, the literary arts in Northwest Arkansas. To that end, 2018 marks the inaugural year of the Open Mouth Poetry Retreat. This four-day writing residency will bring poets from all over to the Ozark foothills, establishing community and collaboration with each other and the region.
Open Mouth is home to the Open Mouth Reading Series, a monthly poetry event running for more than three years. A foundational element of the reading series is our dedication to making poetry inclusive, a communal event shared by professionals and dabblers, those who’ve been in the game for decades as well as those just starting out. Inclusivity extends also to our mission of equity, and we endeavor to make space for poets of color, queer poets, and any whose voices need to be amplified.
about the faculty:
Franny Choi is a queer, Korean-American poet, playwright, teacher, organizer, pottymouth, GryffinClaw, & general overachiever. She is the author of two poetry collections, Soft Science (Alice James Books, 2019) and Floating, Brilliant, Gone (Write Bloody Publishing, 2014), as well as a chapbook Death by Sex Machine (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2017). She has received awards from the Poetry Foundation and the Helen Zell Writers Program, as well as fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center and the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. Her poems have appeared in journals including Poetry Magazine, American Poetry Review, and New England Review, and her work has been featured by the Huffington Post, Ms. Magazine, PBS NewsHour, and Angry Asian Man. A Kundiman Fellow and graduate of the VONA Workshop, in 2016 she founded the Brew &
Forge Book Fair, a fundraising project that brings together poetry readers & writers to build capacity in social justice community organizations.
Franny is the author of two plays: Mask Dances, which was produced as part of the 2011 Writing is Live Festival in Providence, RI, and Family Style, which was given several staged readings in Chicago in 2017. Aside from writing and teaching, Franny is a Senior News Editor for Hyphen Magazine and hosts the Poetry Foundation podcast VS along with fellow poet Danez Smith. A member of the Dark Noise Collective, Franny is currently a Zell Postgraduate Fellow at the University of Michigan & a Citywide Poets Site Leader at Detroit School of Arts. She lives in Hamtramck, MI with some very resilient plants.
Nate Marshall is from the South Side of Chicago. He is the author of Wild Hundreds (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2015), winner of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association’s award for Poetry Book of the Year and The Great Lakes College Association’s New Writer Award, and an editor of The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop (Haymarket Books, 2015). His last rap album, Grown came out in 2015 with his group Daily Lyrical Product. Marshall co-wrote No Blue Memories: The Life of Gwendolyn Brooks with Eve Ewing, produced by Manual Cinema and commissioned by the Poetry Foundation.
Marshall is an experienced and versatile educator, working with youth and adults in both academic and community settings. He co-wrote Chicago Public School's first literary arts
curriculum and develops lesson plans using creative writing to help participants discuss social justice, mental health, community development, and other topics pertinent to social science.
Marshall is an experienced and versatile educator, working with youth and adults in both academic and community settings. He co-wrote Chicago Public School's first literary arts curriculum and develops lesson plans using creative writing to help participants discuss social justice, mental health, community development, and other topics pertinent to social science. He is currently the Assistant Director of Wabash College’s Malcolm X Institute of Black Studies where he also serves as a Visiting Assistant Professor of English and Black Studies. Marshall has taught writing, literature, and history at Northwestern University and the University of Michigan in addition to his work with Young Chicago Authors, SouthernWord, The Neutral Zone, and InsideOut Detroit.
Nate is a member of The Dark Noise Collective and co-directs (with Eve Ewing) Crescendo Literary, a partnership that develops community-engaged arts events and educational resources as a form of cultural organizing. He holds a BA in English and African American Diaspora Studies from Vanderbilt University, completed his MFA at The University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers' Program, and is a proud alumnus of Young Chicago Authors. Marshall has received fellowships from Cave Canem, The Poetry Foundation, and The University of Michigan.