Apply for NH Youth Poet Laureate Program (May 15 deadline)

IMG_0814Click HERE to apply for the NH Youth Poet Laureate program, sponsored by the Poetry Society of NH:

The NH Youth Poet Laureate (NHYPL) is an honorary, unpaid one-year position held by a NH high school student who has shown a dedication to and excellence in writing, and who demonstrates the enthusiasm to share it with the public. The NHYPL serves as an ambassador who will heighten the visibility and value of poetry by and for young people in New Hampshire.
Each Youth Poet Laureate can serve a maximum of one term which will run from September 1 to August 31 each school year.

To be eligible the student must be:

  • A resident of the state of NH
  • In 9th-12th grade as of September of the year the position begins. The student may graduate before the appointment ends on August 31.

Requirements of NHYPL

  •  Participate in at least four events, readings, or school visits of their choosing during the year of their appointment. Events should focus on supporting and increasing opportunities for young people to read and write poetry.


March 9, 2020: Call for Nominations
May 15, 2020 deadline to submit nomination
June, 2020: NHYPL selection is announced

Help spread the word. Feel free to contact Jimmy Pappas if you have any questions at all: Cell phone: 603-568-8434

A Poetic Experiment: Imagination, Impression, and Image — A Free Workshop in April with Ala Khaki

Poetry Society of New Hampshire Members
and non-member adult and high school poets

Poetry Workshop

Free to All!  [Poetry Society Members/ others welcome to join as members]

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Location:  Amherst Public Library at 14 Main St. Amherst, NH

Time:  10:00 am – 2:00 pm

  • Bring a bag lunch and beverage
  • Bring a notebook and pen/pencil

Workshop Facilitator – Ala Khaki

Ala Khaki, an Iranian American poet, is the author of two poetry collections, “Calling the Dawn” (“Sahar Khani” in Farsi), and “Return” (BookSurge Publishing.)  His poems have appeared in Iranian and American literary journals and anthologies including “The Book Review (Barrasi e Ketab),” “Feather (Par),” “Thought and Imagination (Andishe va Khial),” “The Poets’ Touchstone,” “The Worcester Review,” “The 2010 Poets’ Guide to New Hampshire,” and “Poets Showcase: An Anthology of New Hampshire Poets.”  In 1981, Ala Khaki was the subject of a documentary film titled “Resident Exile” by the celebrated documentary filmmaker and director Ross McElwee.

Workshop Theme:

A Poetic Experiment: Imagination, Impression, and Image

In this workshop we will explore the role of the above elements in poetry, how they can amplify the power of the words, create poems that resonate with our core humanity, and elevate a poem beyond space and time.  We will sample works of such universal poets as Rumi, Robert Frost, Richard Eberhart, and others, and, time permitting, we’ll do a few improvisational writings prompted by the workshop facilitator.

Workshop Coordinator – Julie A. Dickson

Julie A. Dickson is a Poetry Society of New Hampshire member, poet and writer of young adult fiction, author of several books and contributor to poetry journals.

If you are interested in attending this workshop or have questions, please email:

EDIT: POSTPONED UNTIL APRIL 15 — March 18: Poet Jimmy Pappas at Gibson’s

Screen Shot 2020-02-29 at 8.58.10 AMThe PSNH reading at Gibson’s Bookstore (45 South Main Street in Concord) this month will feature moderator and headline reader Jimmy Pappas reading from his award winning chapbook from Rattle called Falling off the Empire State Building.
       The reading will take place on Wednesday, March 18th, Wednesday, April 15, from 5:30 to 7:00. The theme this time will be Family Poetry, especially related to dealing with end of life experiences with our loved ones.
       Please bring in poems and/or stories about family life to read or share. Our Round Robins have been a great success, and we hope to build on that momentum by doing one or two a month.
       Please contact Jimmy Pappas at if you have any questions.

Upcoming PSNH Readings at Gibson’s Bookstore

Wednesday, January 15, a Poetry Round Robin. We sit in a circle and each read a poem of our own and/or share a story. We continue reading and chatting from 5:30 to 7:00. To sign up as a reader, contact Jimmy Pappas at Books from the readers will be available for sale as well.    
Wednesday, February 19, a special themed night of African-American poetry. Kayla Lewis and Matt Gile will be our featured performers. An open mic first at 5:30 will be for poets to read a favorite poem by an African-American author or to share a story about race in America.   
Wednesday, March 18, Jimmy Pappas will be reading from his Rattle award-winning chapbook, Falling Off the Empire State Building. Open mic first at 5:30.



All readings are FREE and open to the public!

Find Gibson’s HERE

Celebrating Outgoing and Incoming NH Poets Laureate with PSNH — January 10, 2020

This FREE event, from 5:30 to 7:30 in the House Chamber at the Common Man in Concord, will include the following:

  • Outgoing New Hampshire Poet Laureate Alice Fogel will give a summary of the programs she was involved in during her service to NH, & acknowledge those who participated in many of these projects
  • Incoming New Hampshire Poet Laurete Alexandria Peary will be introduced, & share some of her plans & ideas for her tenure
  • Both poets will read briefly from their work
  • Bob Moore & Cynthia Chatis will entertain us with their music
  • Light appetizers will be served, & there will be a cash bar
  • Books in the Granite State Poetry Series from Hobblebush Books & journals from PSNH will be available
  • PSNH members are invited to display & sell their poetry books
  • Everyone will mingle to start off 2020 with poetry!

Please come and bring along your friends and associates for this New Year occasion.


Alice B Fogel

Questions? Contact Jimmy Pappas of the Poetry Society at

25 Water Street, Concord, NH 03301 (for GPS use 1 Gulf Street, Concord)


Free PSNH Poetry Workshop: Make Your Strong Poems Stronger

Screen Shot 2019-12-08 at 10.38.11 AM

Sponsored by the Poetry Society of New Hampshire

Featuring John-Michael Albert, 8th Portsmouth Poet Laureate

A strong poem is a memorable poem to the reader. Strength is achievable by practicing the elements of your craft as a poet. Participants in the workshop are requested to bring ten copies each of two, original, half-page poems (or two half-page excerpts from poems), for consideration. We will use our collective resources, our “hive mind,” to practice techniques for making strong poems into stronger poems.

Date: Saturday, January 18, 2020

Time: 12 noon – 3:00 PM, light snacks will be provided

Place: Portsmouth Public Library, 2nd floor McLeod Board Room

Note: Light snacks will be provided; closed-container beverages are welcome

Workshop is limited to 12 participants; E-mail to reserve a space

John-Michael Albert was the 8th Poet Laureate of Portsmouth, NH. He is an accomplished musician, composer, conductor, and poet, author of 10 volumes of poetry including Cardamom Cravings, The Bird Catcher, The Light and Air of our Work, and Questions You Were Too Polite to Ask. He has hosted and led numerous poetry events in New Hampshire and on Star Island. Albert holds a BA in Music from the University of the South in Sewanee, TN.

This workshop is being co-coordinated by Julie Dickson, PSNH volunteer and Jimmy Pappas, VP of the Poetry Society of New Hampshire.


Down Cellar Poets Meeting Date Changed for December

The meeting of the Down Cellar Poets will be changed for the month of December to the second Sunday instead of the first because of the holiday traffic which may affect members who come from far away. In January, we meet again on the first Sunday of the month, weather permitting.
We will meet on Sunday, December 8th, from 1:00 to 3:00 at the Chichester Library. If you have never been before, there is no charge to attend. Everyone is invited. It’s a great opportunity to join an open discussion about poetry and writing.
Here are some of the things we may talk about at the next meeting:
1. A list of writing tips.
2. The poetry of Wallace Stevens.
3. Tips on getting published.
4. Samples from poems the members bring in for critique or just for discussion.
5. New topics for discussion brought in by attendees.
Join us and we may have to find a bigger boat to fit us all in. It’s always fun and interesting. No need to bring anything but yourself. Food is always welcome.
If you have any questions, contact Jimmy Pappas
Home: 603-798-3410

Upcoming Poetry Workshop with Deborah Brown

The Language of Poetry

Presented by Deborah Brown, award winning poet – part one

The Slovenian poet Tomaz Salamun wrote:

The poet is a hunter, not an expresser. You express what you already have. The inexpressible is like the beast in the woods that the hunter always knows only by its tracks. The very fact that we can’t describe it adequately now, searching as we are with various metaphors and similes, shows what a powerful thing it is, what attraction it has.

In this two-session workshop participants will focus on the language of poetry, primarily image, metaphor, and simile to track our individual beasts and meanings. You will consider a few examples from contemporary poetry ( including “Tu Do” by Yusef Komunyaka) and experiment with an exercise that helps with following our own tracks in language. We’ll conclude with a prompt for you to work with; the results may, if you wish, be discussed in our next workshop.

Deborah Brown’s recent book, The Human Half was published by BOA Editions in April, 2019. Her first book “ Walking the Dog’s Shadow,” was a winner of the A. J. Poulin Jr. Award from BOA Editions and of a New Hampshire Literary Award for Outstanding Book of Poetry. The title poem of the collection was awarded a Pushcart Prize. She edited, with Maxine Kumin and Annie Finch, Lofty Dogmas: Poets on Poetics (Univ. of Arkansas Press). With Richard Jackson and Susan Thomas, she translated the poems in Last Voyage: Selected Poems of Giovanni Pascoli (Red Hen Press). She lives in Warner, NH.

WHERE: The workshop will be held at The Ford House on the campus of SNHU (2500 North River Road, Manchester, NH 03106 — Directions and parking info here)

WHEN: Saturday, November 23, 2019, 10 am to noon ; Part Two is on Saturday, December 7th, 2019. NOTE This is a two part workshop. You must register for each part separately. Part two information is below.

COST: This workshop is $65 for NHWP members or $85 for nonmembers and is limited to 12 students. Register now to ensure your spot in the class using this URL:


The Language of Poetry, with Deborah Brown, PART TWO (Workshop)

Saturday December 7, 2019, 10:00am-12:00pm

This workshop continues the discussion of the language of poetry. Participants will look at a few more contemporary poems and then, we hope, turn to their work for discussion.

If you decide to submit a poem for critique, make sure the poem is one you are interested in working on and revising. In critique, we’ll focus on one or two aspects, diction and image, or metaphor, or unity—writer’s choice, not so much “criticizing” as analyzing what has occurred on the page.

WHERE: The workshop will be held at The Ford House on the campus of SNHU (2500 North River Road, Manchester, NH 03106 — Directions and parking info here)

WHEN: Saturday, December 7, 10:00 am-1:00 pm

COST: This workshop is $65 for NHWP members or $85 for nonmembers and is limited to 12 students. Register now to ensure your spot in the class using this URL:

NOTE This is a two part workshop. You must register for each part separately. You can find Part One here.