Poets in Play 2023-2024

The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes welcomes you to the
2023-2024 season of Poets in Play.

Join us every other month for a reading featuring a guest poet. Following each reading, there will be an open mic session where writers are encouraged to read one poem either based on the featured poet’s prompt or something of their own selection.

  • Sep


    Ahmed Toslim

    Ahmed Toslim standing with his arms crossed over his chest. He is smiling and wearing a white shirt with a khaki blazer. PROMPT: “Every line I write is a part of me that I give to this world”

    Ahmed Toslim is a Bangladeshi Poet. He writes on the topics of philosophy, epistemology, devotion, and poetic expression. He is a published author, lyricist, and music producer. As a reciter, Ahmed has performed in Rochester, Syracuse, Binghamton, Buffalo in New York, and Dhaka, Narayanganj, and Chittagong in Bangladesh. Ahmed grew up on the bank of the river Shitalakshya in Bangladesh to which his soul is deeply connected. Through his poetry, he seeks to explore the deep questions of life, unravel the complexities of the human experience, and express the emotions that flow through us all.

    Tuesday, September 12, 2023, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    Kaleidoscope Society and Zoom

  • Oct


    Art Goodtimes

    Art is an American poet, farmer, and politician from Colorado and became poetry editor of the “Mountain Gazette” (2011-13) until the magazine folded. In 2014 he published “Looking South to Lone Cone: the Cloud Acre Poems” (Western Eye Press), became poetry editor for “Fungi Magazine” (2014-present) and started the online poetry anthology “Sage Green Journal” with Lito Tejada-Flores (2014-present). In 2019 he published “Dancing on Edge: the McRedeye Poems” (Lithic Press, Fruita, CO). He currently is a poet in residence for the online “Colorado Times Recorder” (Denver), and columnist for the “Four Corners Free Press” (Cortez). He has been co-editor of two mushroom anthologies both from Fungi Press: “MycoEpithalamia: Mushroom Wedding Poems” with Britt Bunyard (2016) and “Medicine for Hearts and Minds” with Wendy Videlock (2023). Art has appeared in many publications and has done hundreds of readings in the region, solo and with others.

    Wednesday, October 04, 2023, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    Kaleidoscope Society and Zoom

  • Nov


    Lafayette Wattles

    Lafayette Wattles standing in front of a crowd of people. He is smiling, wearing a black polo shirt, and holding a book at his side. PROMPT: “Once we were old enough, they’d pack the car each summer and call us vagabonds, which, for the longest time,
    we thought was bag-of-ponds, and we loved it because we saw ourselves as something splashable and fun . . .”

    Some people are born writers. Lafayette Wattles was not one of those people. After he finally came around and discovered the wonders of the word, he decided to become a writer in the hopes of sharing those wonders with others. Lafayette Wattles was the name of his great-great-grandfather, a full-blooded Sioux. When he decided to become a writer, he wanted to honor that part of his past as a way to celebrate this new adventure, so he adopted the name for his writer self.

    Tuesday, November 14, 2023, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    Kaleidoscope Society and Zoom

  • Jan


    Kenzie Allen

    Kenzie Allen with her head tilted to one sign. She is smiling and wearing yellow tassel earrings and a blue blouse. PROMPT: “Sometimes the stories wait for you to begin.”

    Kenzie Allen is a Haudenosaunee poet and multimodal artist. She is a direct descendant of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. A finalist for the National Poetry Series, and author of Cloud Missives (Tin House, 2024), she is the recipient of a 92 NY Discovery Prize, the James Welch Prize for Indigenous Poets, the 49th Parallel Award in Poetry, and fellowships to Aspen Summer Words, Vermont Studio Center, and In-Na-Po (Indigenous Nations Poets).

    Tuesday, January 09, 2024, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    Zoom Only

  • Mar


    John Roche

    John Roche standing in front of a forest. He is smiling and wearing a hat, grey sweater, and plaid shirt. PROMPT: “he composes in the mind’s eye / one-hundred necessary lines.”

    John Roche edits Poetry Playhouse Publications with Jules Nyquist and hosts events in Placitas, NM. After studying at SUNY Buffalo and University College Dublin, he taught literature and creative writing for four decades. His latest book is Joe Rides Again: Further Adventures of Joe the Poet.

    Tuesday, March 12, 2024, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    Zoom Only

  • May


    Karen Vogler

    Karen Vogler smiling, with her hair in a side pony tail, and wearing a grey shirt. PROMPT: “It is the hunger, not the fulfillment, that fuels the passion…”

    Karen Vogler’s work will make you laugh even as you are crying. Influenced by everything from dreams, family, work, and relationships, Karen’s narrative style poetry takes you deeply into her life…both real and imagined. Though she has been through many different creative and artistic phases over her lifetime, writing has always been the one constant in the background.

    Join Here Join Here

    Tuesday, May 14, 2024, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    The ARTS Council and Zoom

  • Jul


    Rachel L. Joe

    Rachel Joe sitting in front of a pool with her head tilted to one side. She is smiling and wearing a striped top with a pink towel on her lap. PROMPT: TBD

    Rachel L. Joe née Johnson received her M.A. in English from SUNY University at Buffalo. In 2021 her poetry book, A Granddaughter’s Memories was published by Foothills Publishing. She has traveled inside and outside of the USA, lived in Hawaii for 4 years and now lives in Buffalo, NY with her husband, Ben Joe and stepdaughter.

    Tuesday, July 09, 2024, 7:00 pm—9:00 pm

    The ARTS Council and Zoom