Watershed Reading

Come hear these four poets hailing from the shores of Lake Superior, mid-coast Maine, Missouri, and a teardrop camper read work encompassing body, place, gender, pain, and hope. 

Oliver Baez Bendorf poet cartoonist

Oliver Baez Bendorf is the 2017-2018 Halls Emerging Artist Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. His first book, The Spectral Wilderness (Kent State U., 2015), was selected by Mark Doty for the Stan & Tom Wick Poetry Prize. He has received fellowships from the Lambda Literary Foundation and Vermont Studio Center, and his work has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Blackbird, diode, Indiana Review, jubilat, Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics, and elsewhere. Born and raised in Iowa, his other home is a teardrop camper.

Heather Derr-Smith poet

Heather Derr-Smith is a human rights activist and the author of four books of poetry, Each End of the World (Editor's Choice Award, Main Street Rag Press, 2005), The Bride Minaret (Editor's Choice Award, University of Akron Press, 2008), Tongue Screw (Spark Wheel Press, 2016) and Thrust (Winner 2016 Lexi Rudnitsky/Editor's Choice Award, Persea Books, 2017). She lives in West Des Moines, Iowa. In addition to writing she teaches poetry workshops with refugees and survivors of war and other trauma both in the United States and internationally. When she is not in Des Moines or traveling for readings and workshops, she is in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, her heart's home. 

Crystal S. Gibbins Wisconsin poet

Crystal S. Gibbins grew up on the islands of Lake of the Woods, Minnesota/Ontario. She is the author of the full-length poetry collection NOW/HERE (Holy Cow! Press) and the editor of Split Rock Review. Her work has been featured widely in literary journals, such as Cincinnati Review, Hayden's Ferry Review, H_NGM_N, Minnesota Review, and Prairie Schooner. Crystal received her PhD in English from the University of Nebraska, with concentrations in 20th and 21st Century American Poetry and Environmental Literature. She lives and writes on the south shore of Lake Superior in Washburn, Wisconsin. 

Ready to Visit?

Arts + Literature Laboratory is located in Madison’s Schenk-Atwood neighborhood at 2021 Winnebago Street, Madison, Wisconsin 53704.

Gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday 11am-3pm during exhibitions or by appointment. Please check the exhibitions calendar before planning your visit, as the gallery is closed between exhibitions and other schedule changes are posted here.


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