When you hear the phrase Oh, Miami, its usually accompanied by an exasperated sigh over local frustrations such as road rage, dumb criminals, or cannibalistic reptiles. But a few literate souls have reclaimed the term for Miamis first poetry festival. O, Miami is a monthlong county-wide literary event with the mission to make sure every Dade resident encounters a poem during National Poetry Month. Funded by the Knight Foundation and organized by P. Scott Cunningham and Peter Borrebach, the festival has verse activities programmed for every day in April.
The fest kicks off this Friday with Eating Our Words, an opening-night pig roast and reading by poet Tracy K. Smith at Boaters Grill at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $30 for general admission or $20 for students. Later, at 8 p.m., New Orleans poet Sunni Patterson will read at Books & Books (265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables) with her Def Poetry Jam stylings about life in the Ninth Ward. The reading is free. On Tuesday, at Luna Star Café (775 NE 125th St., North Miami), witness Sir Archibald Whistler Presents the Honest Liars Club, where Florida International Universitys Creative Writing MFA students will read their work. By the end of the month, actor James Franco, U.S. Poet Laureate W. S. Merwin, and Broken Social Scenes Andrew Whitman will have also recited verse. Oh, Miami. You just might make us proud after all.
Fri., April 1, 7 p.m., 2011