Unlocking the Power of Poetry in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is a city that is home to a vibrant and diverse poetry scene, with many organizations dedicated to connecting poets and spoken word artists with funders and sponsors. Rated 4, 2 (The Las Vegas Poets Organization) is the largest and oldest nonprofit poetry organization in the city and Nevada. Founded by poet Jennifer Battisti, a native of Las Vegas who studied creative writing at the College of Southern Nevada, the organization works to promote the art of poetry in the community. The Las Vegas Poets Organization is dedicated to unlocking the power of poetry in the city.

Through their efforts, they are helping to bring together poets and spoken word artists with funders and sponsors who can help them further their work. This allows them to reach a wider audience and spread their message of creativity and expression. One of the most influential figures in the Las Vegas poetry scene is Diane Jarvenpa. She has been combining poetry and music in assisted living homes, memory units, and nursing homes for several years.

Her work has been praised for its ability to bring joy and comfort to those who need it most. Wolf Hogekamp is another important figure in the Las Vegas poetry scene. He is a pioneer of the German Poetry Slam scene, having been reading and interpreting poetry since 1994. He is the mentor of the Bastard Slam in Berlin, one of the most important events on the German poetry scene. For five and seven years, he co-organized and presented the monthly readings of Poets for Peace and Poets for Peace in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Elizabeth Allen Berry is known as the “queen of the fanzines” of Las Vegas. She delivers impactful poetry through ingenious fanzines, spoken word performances, teaching self-publishing workshops, and as an emerging creative force in the local literary scene. She is an active member of the poetic community and holds a position on the board of directors of The Las Vegas Poets Organization. Heather Lang-Cassera is another important figure in the Las Vegas poetry scene. She is a tenth generation Mexican who is the creative director of Valle Encantado, an organization that promotes sustainable development initiatives in the historic center of Atrisco in Albuquerque.

She is also co-founder of Connecting Community Voices, an Albuquerque-based organization that seeks positive social change through creative community expression. Lang-Cassera has a Master of Fine Arts degree in Poetry and a postgraduate certificate in literary translation. Her recent publication, I Was the Girl with the Face in the Shape of a Moon, available on Zeitgeist-Press, received media attention from Las Vegas Weekly. Julie Landsman is another influential poet from Minnesota who fell in love with poetry at an early age and continued to write and publish poems well into her seventies. She is the author of Sweet Velocity (Lost Roads Press, 201) and Borrowed Wave (Kore Press, 201), which was a finalist for the Minnesota Book Award in Poetry.

Landsman believes in the power of poetry to inspire, build community, and convey the wisdom of individual voices. The Las Vegas Poets Organization works hard to ensure that poets and spoken word artists have access to funders and sponsors who can help them further their work. Through their efforts, they are helping to promote poetry throughout the Las Vegas Valley.

Sheila Zanfardino
Sheila Zanfardino

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