An evening of poetry with two Maine Poet Laureates

3 mins read
Julia Bouwsma

FARMINGTON – ArtsFarmington is pleased to present An Evening of Poetry Reading by incoming and outgoing Maine Poet Laureates: Julia Bouwsma and Stuart Kestenbaum. The event will take place on Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. in the intimate setting of the Emery Community Arts Center on Academy Street in downtown Farmington. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Jeffrey Thomson, poet and professor of Creative Writing at the UMF English Department will introduce the poets and will lead a Q&A session after the readings.

There will be a brief reception, without food or drink because of COVID, to meet the poets. Devaney, Doak & Garrett Booksellers will be on location for the sale of signed books.

Julia Bouwsma, is an off-the-grid homesteader, poet, librarian and editor. Starting her passion for poetry at a very young age she has now been recently appointed the sixth Poet Laureate of Maine. She is the author of two poetry collections, “Midden” and” Work by Bloodlight.” She has received several honors and awards such as the Maine Literary Awards for Poetry Book, the Poets Out Loud Prize and the Cider Press Review Book Award. She serves as the Library Director for Webster Library in Kingfield, Maine and is currently teaching in the Creative Writing department at the University of Maine.

Stuart Kestenbaum

Stuart Kestenbaum is the author of six collections of poems and a collection of essays. He was host of the Maine Public Radio program “Poems from Here” and the host/curator of the podcasts “Make/Time” and “Voices of the Future.”

He was the director of Haystack Mountain School of Crafts. He has written and spoken widely on craft making and creativity. His poems and writing have appeared in numerous small press publications and magazines. He served as Maine’s poet Laureate from 2016-2021.

Former US Poet Laureate Ted Kooser has written: “Stuart Kestenbaum writes the kind of poems I love to read, heartfelt response to the privilege of having been given a life. No hidden agendas here, no theories to espouse, nothing but life, pure life, set down with craft and love.”

Masks and vaccination are both required. Admission is $10, free for 18 and under and for UMF Students. Tickets are for sale at the website: and at the door on the evening of the event.

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