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As National Poetry Month swings into gear, the O, Miami Poetry Festival, with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, returns with the goal of delivering a poem to all 2.6 million Miami-Dade residents. This is a giant task, but poetry has enormous wings. Wings that can and will transport the ethereal beauty of poetry into the ears and hearts of our community. All the community has to do is attend one of the many free events scheduled throughout the month of April.

O, Miami, Opening at Palacio de Los Jugos

O, Miami opening at Palacio de Los Jugos.

April 6th: Join dancers/choreographers Rashaun Mitchell and Silas Reiner (Merce Cunningham) and poet/critic Claudia La Rocco for TASTE, a dance and poetry commission for O, Miami. Two performances. Champagne served. Tickets are $15. Click here to purchase/RSVP. Location: Bas Fisher Invitational, 100 NE 11th St., Miami.

April 7th: This Sunday, poets Denise Duhamel, Maureen Seaton and Julie Wade read from their latest work at Books & Books in Coral Gables. Event is free and open to the public. Location: Books & Books, 265 Aragon, Coral Gables.

April 10th: The Betsy on South Beach is home to several readings this year. On Wednesday, April 10th, head over The Betsy for poetry and music with Maggie Hasspacher and Fellows from the New World Symphony. Hasspacher is a poet and bassist whose poems are arranged for instrumentation. Also, composer Jeff Briggs will present new arrangements of poems by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Hyam Plutzik. Event is free and open to the public. Location: 1440 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach.

“Poetry is a living, breathing force that can light up the city. O, Miami is its platform. The written word leaves the printed page for a parade on South Beach, morphs into interpretive dance in Hialeah, and along the way helps art become part of people’s everyday lives,” said Alberto Ibargüen, president of the Knight Foundation.

For more information about upcoming O, Miami Poetry Festival events visit www.omiami.org. In the meantime, write a poem and give it to a friend. Help O, Miami spread poetry county-wide.

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