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Poets At “PoughETRY Fest 2022” Bring Words To Life

All of the attendees at numerous places, on stages and online zoom faces, spent the day listening to and creating poetry at the 5th Annual PoughETRY Fest.

Photo Caption: Poet Gold and Poet Michael Douglass J.r. at PoughETRY Fest 2022 outside the Cunneen-Hackett Theater in Poughkeepsie, NY.

PoughETRY Fest 2022 was held both online and in-person on April 23rd at the Cunneen-Hackett Theater in Poughkeepsie, NY. The festivities were hosted by the organization’s creator Poet Gold who is an author known for her lifelong dedication to the art of poetry and the 2017/2018 Dutchess County Poet Laureate.

A photo of James A. Baldwin from The Black Past Website as a public domain image

This year, activist, playwright and author James A. Baldwin (1924-1987) was chosen as the honored inspiration for 2022. Baldwin once said “Great art can only be created out of love” and that’s what PoughETRY Fest displays at their annual events when they showcase new artists and support poetry workshops.

“Great art can only be created out of love”

- James A. Baldwin

One workshop that was held in person at the Cunneen-Hackett Theater was the “Youth Open Mic Workshop” facilitated by Teaching Artists D.Cross (Derick Cross) and Lito Koqui (Miguel Sanchez). This workshop focused on youth experimenting with sounds and music to create poetry. D.Cross who is also a ‘Vocal Beats Expressionist” spoke to The Goodie Drop during the workshop saying, “we are writing poems but we are also combining words and sounds. So it’s poetry, but it’s also the art of making words come alive using sound.”

Photo Captions: Teaching Artist D. Cross hosting workshop / Poet Mike Jurkovic reading poetry / Youth Attendee At Workshop / Poet Cathy Schmitz typing / Women Writers in Bloom zoom workshop / CAPS zoom event / Taina Asili, Poet Gold and Gaetano Vaccaro at the PoughETRY Fest finale at the Cunneen-Hackett Theater in Poughkeepsie, NY.

Another poet by the name of Cathy Schmitz brought her trusty typewriter and set up a pop-up poetry stand for .05 cent poems. Schmitz created the poems on the spot for individuals. The poems are based on a question attendees would answer relating to the poet for this year’s honored inspiration, James A. Baldwin.

Audio Caption: Interview with Poet Cathy Schmitz

“I felt a responsibility to pick up the mantle. I wanted to leave something good behind and this is it.”

- Poet Gold

PoughETRY Fest concluded with a finale that was broadcasted live on Facebook. Poet Gold filled the stage with talented artists like a 10-year-old poet prodigy named Michael Douglass J.r., Sounds of Heritage Gospel Choir and artist Taina Asili. Poet Gold told The Goodie Drop that after her time as Poet Laureate she wanted to continue sharing poetry in Dutchess County. Especially when poetry spaces like the Muddy Cup, The Cubby-Hole and Sleuth Pro's Poetry Nights stopped having those events. Gold said, “I felt a responsibility to pick up the mantle. I wanted to leave something good behind and this is it.”

There's Poetry All Over The Hudson Valley!

The PoughETRY Fest Facebook page is filled with live performances and workshops from the event. For more poetry-related events and PoughETRY Fest activities though out the year, follow these links. Link - and

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