What a weekend.
The Austin Feminist Poetry Festival took place this weekend. After having a day to decompress, I am filled with so much gratitude.
I cannot express enough thanks to Katherine Oldmixon and the Huston-Tillotson University Department of English. Their generous donation of space (with such great acoustics, no less) was crucial to making this event happen.
Thanks to Susan Post of BookWoman for giving her weekend to selling books and helping support poets both local and distant. And much thanks to Debra Winegarten for helping to run the book table on Friday night. And thanks to everyone who bought books and helped support local artists and bookstores.
I had other help with logistics as well. Poet Barbara Gregg provided marvelous assistance with my Potluck Poetics workshop. Jon spent his day off making programs when our original volunteer fell through, as well as running errands and assisting with the BookWoman setup. Lisa Marie Estus sat down with me months ago and gave valuable advice that gave me the confidence to see this event through.
Thank you to all of our donors: Mom, Dad, Jennifer Karydas, Barbara Gregg, Paula Starche, and all those anonymous folks who left cash donations. Your support will help us move forward with a 501(c)3 application.
Thanks to ire’ne lara silva, Liza Wolff-Francis, Scott Wiggerman and David Meischen, and Beth Kropf for their engaging workshops. My only regret is that, because I was so busy with my hosting duties, I couldn’t attend every single minute. Thanks also to ire’ne and Liza for their amazing performances, in conjunction with Kelsey Erin Shipman and Faylita Hicks. Thank you for your hard work, your energy, your confidence. Thank you for being willing to be vulnerable. Thank you for being willing to ask questions about yourselves and your feminism, and be willing to do so publicly. Thank you for opening space for discussion.
Thank you to the parents, grandparents, and teachers who brought their teenage poets to this event. Next year, I plan to expand the program to include workshops aimed at younger feminists.
And most of all, thank you to everyone who came out for the workshops, who read at the open mics, and contributed to the discussion. Thank you for sharing your poems and your selves. I am grateful to everyone who came out and shared this experience, and can’t wait for next year.