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The Telluride Institute’s Talking Gourds Poetry Club is proud to host Jennifer Rane Hancock, a regional poet who teaches creative writing at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction, on Tuesday night, March 27th, starting at 6 p.m. at the Telluride Arts offices.

Hancock facilitates the Poetry Night gathering at Mesa County Public Library on the second Wednesday of each month. Her poems have recently appeared in Fruita Pulp and Crab Orchard Review. This fall semester, her Craft of Poetry Class will be working with students from the design and printmaking classes to produce poetry broadsides.

Jennifer Rane Hancock received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College, and her Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University. She is currently Assistant Professor of English at Colorado Mesa University, and her first collection, Between Hurricanes, was recently published by Lithic Press.

Mark Cox, a poet who teaches in the Department of Creative Writing at University of North Carolina, Wilmington, and Vermont College, had this to say about Hancock’s book: “I loved this book. When I finished it, I felt awakened and as if I had travelled great distances … because of the distances these poems cover within themselves, their rich relationships between concept and corresponding detail. Top it all off with a keen ear for subtle music and a big heart — you get memorable, mature work by an extraordinary poet.”

Her work has also appeared in Ecotone, Crab Orchard Poetry Review, and Puerto del Sol, among other journals. She occasionally forays on the Grand Mesa, where sadly someone else has found her chanterelle field.

The reading begins at 6 p.m. on Tuesday March. 27th at the Telluride Arts Gallery Office, 135 West Pacific, across the street from the Wilkinson Library entrance.

Poetry Club announcements are followed by the featured performance. Then, following a short break, the gourd is passed and everyone has a chance to read a poem or two (their own, or one from a favorite poet) that speaks to the theme for March – “Play.”

After taking our usual summer break, we will continue our regular Poetry Club readings in Telluride starting in September, hopefully with Trish Hopkinson of Utah.

Simultaneously, we will be exploring special guest readings throughout the year, with planning underway for a Western Slope visit from California’s Claire Blotter April 23-24th for a performance and a workshop on performing.

May18-19 we will have an open mike Friday night and host the winners of the Fischer Prize poetry competition at the Telluride Literary Arts Festival on Saturday, including a new $500 Cantor Award for the best submission in the Fischer Prize by a Colorado Poet.

Submissions for the 2018 Fischer Prize are now being accepted at


Talking Gourds programming survives through the generous support of private donors and Club members.

There is a one-time fee of $25 to join the Talking Gourds Poetry Club. That makes you a full member for a year and gets you on our cyber mailchimp list for readings, festivals and contests. And it means that you are one of those generous supporters who believes in the importance of the arts on the Western Slope.

A $10 annual renewal fee keeps you up to date as a full member, renews your subscription to our private email newsletter, and gives you half-price for Fischer Prize submissions and free Poetry Club broadsides.

Talking Gourds Poetry Club, Gourd Guests, the Telluride Literary Arts Festival, the Western Slope Poet Laureate and the MycoLicious MycoLuscious MycoLogical Poetry Show are collaborative projects of the Telluride Institute — in partnership with the Wilkinson Public Library, Between the Covers Bookstore, Ah Haa School for the Arts, Lithic Bookstore & Gallery, Telluride Arts, the Telluride Mushroom Festival, and our club members.

Talking Gourds is indebted to generous contributions past and present from Audrey Marnoy, Peter Waldor, the Cantor Family of North Carolina, the late Elaine Cantor Fischer and her many friends, Eduardo Brummel, Daiva Chesonis, Elissa Dickson, Laura Colbert, Jess Newens, Judy Kohin, Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, Danny Rosen, Kyle Harvey, Craig Jackman, Kate Jones, Pepper Raper, Molly Perault, Alexander Ging, Amy Brosch, Tara Miller, Sam Brown, Art Wiseheart, Elle Metrick, Paige Blankenbuehler, Brian Calvert, Meg Nagel, Kyra Kopestonsky, Lee & Billi Taylor, Allyson Snyder, Amy Levek, David Oyster, Michael Olschewsky & Ruth Duffy, and our many friends.

Call 970-729-0220 (voice or text, but no voicemail please) or visit the Gourds website <> for more info.

Photo of the poets, short exemplary poems and other information available by emailing Art Goodtimes at Poster below:




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