Support the “Bilingual Poetry Festival”
In the Community & On the Web

Join a diverse group from the community in celebrating National Poetry Month and an interactive and digital Bilingual Poetry Festival which starts April 4, 2012.  The aims of the festival are to unite general poetry audiences and multilingual RI residents through the celebration of poetry, music, and literary culture in community and online settings. Participants in the festival will learn about and experience how interacting bi-culturally can become a tool in self-discovery, personal empowerment, political expression, and community building.

Spearheading the Festival Committee is Reza Clifton, who operates and is the founder/producer of a well-received and re-requested Bilingual Poetry Night that she debuted in downtown Providence in the spring of 2011.  Through the development of these Bilingual Poetry Nights, and during the organization of Hispanic Heritage Month activities in Providence in 2011, Clifton began meeting with authors, poets and community organizers about furthering Bilingual Poetry programming and developing a festival.  As a result, a group of published and to-be published talented individuals emerged with the interest, ability and motivation to create spaces to share their work.  The Bilingual Poetry Festival is evidence of their commitment to advancing themselves as literary professionals and to sharing the joys of hearing bilingual and multicultural poetry.

The Festival will begin April 4, 2012 with the first in the two-month radio series; to accomplish the digital arm of the festival, poets will appear weekly on Clifton’s online radio show, Sonic Watermelons, and they will blog on throughout the two-month period.  Bilingual and multicultural poets will also engage in readings, performances, workshops, and talkback sessions to a variety of different audiences in RI through May 2012.  These interactive sessions will take place in schools, restaurants, cafes, art centers, and other community locations, while the incorporation of digital media will allow the Festival to provide an accessible and continuous resource for inspiration and for getting to know the poets.

We encourage community members of all ethnicities and backgrounds to join us in this journey to use literature and performing arts to build self-discovery, personal empowerment, political expression, and community-building with youth and adult community members in Providence. A list of performers and a festival schedule will be maintained on, along with blog posts from the resident poets.

If you would like more detail about events happening in April and May, if you want to learn more about participating poets and performers, or if you would like to learn about ways to sign up or perform during the festival, email or call 401-217-9680.



  • On Radio: April 4, 11, 18, 25; May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
  • In the Community: April 12, 13, 19, 24, May 3, May 10, May 12


  • First Featured Poets: Carolina Major Diaz, QueenMah Love
  • Registered Poets: 9
  • Registered bands: 3

Partial List of Participating Sites

  • AS220
  • Rhode Island College
  • Tea in Sahara
  • Fertile Underground