About the Nebraska Poetry Society
Welcome to the Nebraska Poetry Society, where words flow, imaginations soar, and the spirit of poetry is celebrated every day. Whether you're here seeking the camaraderie of fellow poets, looking to hone your craft, or hoping to support our mission of making poetry accessible to all corners of Nebraska and beyond, you've found the right place. Join us as we champion the power of poetry to connect, empower, and inspire. Because at the Nebraska Poetry Society, every word counts, every voice matters, and every dream is worth pursuing.
Who We Are
Welcome to the heart and soul of the Nebraska Poetry Society.
Official and Impactful
We're proud to be an official 501c3 organization, which means your generous donations support a worthy cause and are tax-deductible, too. And with our passionate team made up entirely of volunteers, every penny you give directly bolsters our programs, echoing in the community.
Community and Growth
From our humble beginnings in August of 2020, we've nurtured a thriving community of over a hundred dedicated members. These members, whether they've contributed the annual fee or have been awarded a scholarship, are the backbone of our society. And let's not forget our virtual gatherings, steadily drawing in an ever-expanding audience of 25 to 40 poetry enthusiasts each month.
Our “Why” is Rooted in Passion and Experience
Our roots run deep, and they’re woven with tales of struggle, determination, and resilience. Founded by Charlene Pierce, her journey from battling poverty to earning a college degree as a single mom while dealing with the challenges posed by her cochlear implant is the basis of our mission. We have a profound respect for equality, free speech, and the sheer transformative power of poetry.
Photo credit: Joey Sears, Papillion Public Library
Dedicated to celebrating and educating diverse voices of all ages and skill levels. Our goal: make poetry accessible to all and honor Nebraska’s poets.
At the Nebraska Poetry Society, our mission is more than a statement – it's our commitment, our promise, and the driving force behind every initiative we undertake.
Making Poetry Accessible for Everyone
We dream of a world where the beauty and power of poetry are within everyone's grasp. To transform this dream into reality, we've kept our membership fees to a minimal $35/year. This small investment gives you a golden ticket to all our monthly workshops. And for those facing financial constraints? A scholarship is just a click away on our website – no hoops, no hurdles. Students and youth always have free access.
Championing Nebraska's Talented Poets
Every month, we shine the spotlight on one gifted Nebraska poet, offering them a platform that’s a tad different from the usual. Instead of a mere reading, it's an enriching experience, blending soulful poetry with engaging discussions and spirited Q&A sessions. It's not just about being heard; it's about connecting, sharing, and basking in the shared love for poetic artistry. Whether you're in the audience or on the mic, we promise you'll leave with more than just verses in your head.
What We Believe
At Nebraska Poetry Society, our beliefs are more than just words on paper – they're the compass guiding our every endeavor.
Accessible Learning for All
We ardently believe that financial constraints should never be a barrier to knowledge and skill. While some writing workshops and classes can put quite a dent in your wallet, we stand apart, ensuring that everyone has an equal shot at honing their craft. And if you're eyeing that scholarship, know we won’t play 20 questions. Your ambition to learn is proof enough for us.
Poets Deserve Their Due (and then some!)
Ever heard the saying, "Penny for your thoughts"? Well, we reckon a poet's insights are worth a tad more! Though we might not have the deepest pockets (yet!), we're staunch believers in paying our workshop facilitators. As we thrive on grants and donations, every year sees us inching closer to giving our poets the compensation they so rightly deserve. After all, poetic genius deserves more than just applause!
Empowerment through Expression
Hand someone the tools and confidence to articulate their thoughts, and you've gifted them a superpower. With every stanza and line, we see individuals rising, using their newfound voice to advocate, influence, and inspire.
Supporting Hearts and Arts
The world of poetry is intimate, raw, and deeply personal. We've built a haven where everyone, regardless of their journey, feels welcome to share their soul's musings. Because sometimes, sharing our writing work isn't just about art – it’s about healing, both for the poet and their listeners.
Our Benefit to the Community
The Nebraska Poetry Society is more than just a hub for poets and poetry enthusiasts. We're a positive force, reverberating through communities, bridging gaps, and fostering growth. Here's a glimpse of our enriching contributions.
Reaching Every Corner
By hosting virtual events, we ensure that no poet is left behind. Whether you're in bustling Omaha or the serene countryside of Nebraska, our doors are open. This has especially been a boon to those in rural and underserved areas, bringing world-class poetic experiences right to their screens.
From the hesitant first-timer to the blossoming poet ready to share their masterpiece, we've witnessed countless transformations. Providing a nurturing platform empowers individuals to find their voice, share their unique narratives, and blossom with newfound confidence.
Empowering Literary Dreams
The world of publishing is not just competitive; it's a labyrinth. With our continuous support and encouragement, many of our poets have taken brave steps into this world. While there's no magic wand to guarantee publishing success, we're elated to see our community members earn their rightful spots in print, one publication at a time.
A Melting Pot of Perspectives
When poets from diverse backgrounds and walks of life converge, it’s not just words that are exchanged. Our participants learn, grow, and evolve by hearing stories and experiences that might be worlds apart from their own. This enriches their craft and fosters a deeper sense of empathy and cultural awareness.
Poetry, in its essence, transcends boundaries. In every line and verse, it brings together diverse communities, forging connections and promoting mutual understanding. Our programs are laying the foundations for a more inclusive, understanding, and harmonious community.
High-Quality Monthly Workshops
Our workshops are where talent meets guidance. Hosted monthly and facilitated virtually, these sessions bring together budding poets from every corner of Nebraska and beyond. Each workshop is meticulously designed and delivered by accomplished poets, boasting MFA degrees and published poetry collections. Learn from the best without stepping out of your comfort zone!
Engaging Monthly Poetry Readings
With a focus on voices with Nebraska roots, our monthly poetry readings are an enchanting blend of inspiration and interaction. Listen to published poets, some even hailed as the best nationally, share their craft and indulge in deep, enlightening conversations with them. The best part? These virtual sessions are free and open to all. Inspiration is just a click away!
Something for everyone and all skill levels
Events for the Powerful Spoken Word
From stirring open mics to exhilarating poetry slams, our commitment to the craft of spoken word poetry is deep and expanding. With an aim to spread this vibrant art form across Nebraska, we're constantly adding more events and specialized workshops. Even if you are not a spoken word poet, be sure to catch one (or all!) of these events. We promise you’ll be moved and leave inspired.
On the National Stage
We proudly send a slam poet to represent Nebraska at the National BlackBerry Peach Slam Competition. Not just in spirit, but we also cover their journey, ensuring our state's voice resonates at this prestigious event.
Poets, it's time to shine! We host two annual contests, one focused on traditional print poetry and the other on dynamic performance poetry. With cash prizes up for grabs and esteemed professionals from the respective fields as guest judges, it's an opportunity to showcase talent and get recognized.
Annual Poetry Retreat/Convention/Festival
Imagine a space brimming with poetic energies, where creativity flourishes. We may call it a convention, festival or retreat, but regardless of the name, our in-person multi-day day events are a haven for poets. Learn through workshops, engage with renowned speakers, enjoy captivating entertainment, and most importantly, be a part of a close-knit community of poetry lovers. A perfect escape to reignite your muse!
Become Part of the Nebraska Poetry Society
Get to Know Us
At the Nebraska Poetry Society, every verse contributes to our larger poetic narrative, and every supporter is a cherished chapter in our ongoing saga. If you've felt a spark of connection or curiosity while browsing our story, why not ignite it further? Attend one of our workshops, readings, or events and experience firsthand the camaraderie and creativity that infuse our gatherings.
For those with a heart for fostering the arts, we welcome donations of any magnitude. Your contributions directly fuel our passionate endeavors, ensuring that the world of poetry remains vibrant and accessible to all. Interested in crafting a unique sponsorship opportunity or collaboration? We're all ears and eager to discuss possibilities. Reach out, and let's pen a beautiful future for poetry together.