Rhyme and the reason

SOMOS celebrates Poetry Month with a series of local literary events


Twenty-six poets, 10 musicians on 11 evenings — that’s what’s in store for fans of the literary arts as a local celebration of National Poetry Month gets underway.

In celebration of National Poetry Month, conducted each year in April, the Society of the Muse of the Southwest has announced a stellar lineup of poets and musicians performing over the course of 11 evenings. Local award-winning poet Veronica Golos is curating the series.

“I am excited about the variety and musical accompaniment in this SOMOS’ fourth honoring National Poetry Month in Taos,” Golos says in a prepared statement. “Spread out over eleven evenings in April, we will have poets from Santa Fe, Laguna Pueblo, Los Alamos, the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Pueblo, Colorado, and Texas, as well as local poets and musicians. Many of our featured poets have new books. I hope many people will come to SOMOS and be inspired by our impressive lineup of poetry and the music.”

The series premiere is Saturday (April 1), 7 p.m., at the SOMOS Salon, 108 Civic Plaza Drive. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. All events are free; donations would be greatly appreciated.

Opening night will feature poets Colleen Carias, Max Early and William Barnes. Noted musician and visual artist George Chacón will play the conga.

Carias is a poet and videographer/photographer based in Santa Fe. She was awarded the 2015 Milton Kessler Memorial Prize in Poetry for “is a dangerous thing.”

Early is the author of “Ears of Corn: Listen” and creates traditional pottery in order to help save the art of making pottery in Laguna Pueblo. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of New Mexico in 2010.

Barnes is a poet, botanist, attorney and teacher. His first book of poems, “The Ledgerbook,” is a “palimpsest of beings: human, plant and ‘animate earth’ – a chorus of prints” addressing the gorgeous, yet violent American West and the ways in which we are all in that story, too, according to Golos.

Twenty-eight years ago, Chacón painted “El Santero,” a mural on the west-facing wall of Cabot Plaza at the Taos Plaza stoplight, and has produced public art all over Taos. He has studied Afro-Cuban drumming for 35 years and says he’s “still trying to figure it out.”

The poets will have books for sale. For more information, call (575) 758-0081 or visit

National Poetry Month in Taos

Schedule of events

Thursday (April 6)

Gaia Mika, Taos poet

Ariana Kramer, Taos writer and poet

Branwyn Holroyd, Canadian poet living in Taos

Musician: Rachael Penn, violin, musician of Taos

April 9

Jane Lin, poet From Los Alamos, author of “Day of Clean Brightness” (3: A Taos Press)

James Thomas Stevens, poet from Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, author of eight poetry books

Musician: Melody Romancito, musician from Taos

April 12

“Letters from the Feminist Underground”

Tina Carlson, Stella Reed and Katherine Dibella Seluja read from their collaborative manuscript

Stella Reed, Santa Fe poet

Tina Carlson, Santa Fe poet and author

Katherine Seluja, Santa Fe poet and author

Musicians: Two Birds and A Stone, vocalists from Santa Fe

April 13

Robin Shawver, Taos poet

Donald Levering, Santa Fe poet and author of “Coltraine’s God” (Red Mountain Press)

Musician: Melody Romancito, guitar and vocals

April 19

Sawnie Morris, poet, author and teacher from Taos

Leslie Ullman, poet from Taos, author of “Library of Small Happiness” (3: A Taos Press)

Music: To be announced

April 20

Cathy Strisik, poet from San Cristobal, author of “The Mistress” (3: A Taos Press)

James Scott Smith, poet from Colorado

Musicians: Mazatl Galindo on flute, Benito Concha on drums

April 22

Dana Levin, poet and teacher from Santa Fe

Paisley Rekdal, poet from Utah

Music: To be announced

April 23

Lisa Chavez, poet and teacher from Albuquerque

Gary Worth Moody, poet from Santa Fe

Juan Morales, poet and teacher, College of Pueblo, Colorado

Music: To be announced

April 24

Joan Ryan, poet from Taos

Musician: David Garver, actor and musician from Taos

April 26

Lise Goett, poet and teacher from Taos

Cyrus Cassells, translator, film critic and actor

Veronica Golos, poet and curator from Taos, author of “Rootwork” (3: A Taos Press)

Musician: Richard Romero, flamenco guitar, Taos