The DC Poet Project

The DC Poet Project is a poetry reading series and open-to-all poetry competition culminating in the publication of a new book of poetry by a DC author. Founded in 2017 through the support of LISC DC and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the DC Poet Project partners with DC Public Library, BRINK Media, and the Anacostia Coordinating Council to produce community-oriented arts programming.

Every year, the DC Poet Project features an exceptional group of area poets. In 2021 the DC Poet Project featured E. Ethelbert Miller, Naomi Ayala, John Johnson, Holly Karapetkova, Kim B Miller, Grace Cavalieri, Lori Tsang, Jane Schapiro, W. Luther Jett, Marlena Chertock, and Malik Thompson. The 2021 series was curated by Regie Cabico and hosted by Aaron Holmes. You can learn more about the 2021 reading series on the Day Eight blog here.

Poet Michael Cameron at a 2017 DC Poet Project reading; founding reading series director Gregory Luce at left.

At each reading in the DC Poet Project series, the featured poets select one winning open mic reader. Those winners are invited to feature at the final event in the series, where one overall winner is selected and provided a book contract. Thanks to project partner BRINK Media, you can view videos of the feature poets and finalists reading their poetry on Facebook here.

Read about the 2023 winning poet’s book, Dipped in Cerulean by Brandon Douglas.

Read about the 2022 winning poet’s book, I’d Rather Be Called a Nerd by Dominic McDonald.

Read about the 2021 winning poet’s book, So Much of Everything by Jenn Koiter.

Read about the 2019 winning poet’s book, Port of Exit by Kevin Wiggins.

Read about the 2018 winning poet’s book, Love for Her by John Johnson.

Read about the 2017 winning poet’s book, Talking to the Night by Susan Meehan.