*Due to complications with COVID-19, this event has been postponed to June of 2021 and moved online. Join our mailing list for updates about future application periods.*

The third annual Open Mouth Poetry Retreat will take place from June 5 through June 8, 2020, with faculty members torrin a. greathouse and Jake Skeets. We will accept applications January 3 to March 1, 2020.

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 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.

Note to past attendees: if you have attended the past two years, we ask that you kindly wait another year before applying again, so as to make room for others (though we love you!).

2020 Open Mouth Poetry Retreat

with torrin a. greathouse and Jake Skeets

Applications for the retreat are now open!

Click here to apply.

about us:

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. Part of fulfilling that mission is offering the annual Open Mouth Poetry Retreat, now in its third year. This four-day writing residency brings poets from all over the state and the nation, creating opportunities for collaboration and poetic community.


Open Mouth is home to the Open Mouth Reading Series, a monthly poetry event running for more than four 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:

torrin a. greathouse is a transgender cripple-punk & MFA candidate at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of boy/girl/ghost (TAR Chapbook Series, 2018) & assistant editor of The Shallow Ends. Their work is published/forthcoming in POETRY, Ploughshares, & The Kenyon Review. She is the youngest ever winner of the Poetry Foundation's J. Howard and Barbara M.J. Wood Prize.


Jake Skeets is Black Streak Wood, born for Water’s Edge. He is Diné from Vanderwagen, New Mexico. He is the author of Eyes Bottle Dark with a Mouthful of Flowers, a National Poetry Series-winning collection of poems. He holds an MFA in poetry from the Institute of American Indian Arts. Skeets is a winner of the 2018 Discovery/Boston Review Poetry Contest and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Skeets edits an online publication called Cloudthroat and organizes a poetry salon and reading series called Pollentongue, based in the Southwest. He is a member of Saad Bee Hózhǫ́: A Diné Writers’ Collective and currently teaches at Diné College in Tsaile, Arizona.

sponsored and supported by:

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Want to sponsor a scholarship or help offset costs? We accept donations from individuals and local businesses. Please email openmouthreadings@gmail.com