Word S3 E6: National Poetry Month

By Tom Maxedon
Published: Tuesday, April 7, 2020 - 5:05am

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Rosemarie Dombrowski
Arizona State University
Rosemarie Dombrowski is the Phoenix Poet Laureate and teaches creative writing at ASU.

It’s National Poetry Month.

And even as the coronavirus pandemic continues to shutter brick and mortar performance spaces, poets conquer with technology to stay in contact with audiences and promote their writing since booksellers aren’t considered essential businesses where shutter-in-place orders are present.

As we shine a virtual spotlight on poetry this month, we begin this episode at home in the Valley with friend to the show, Rosemarie Dombrowski.

She’s the Phoenix poet laureate.

And, along with other colleagues at ASU and the wider literary community, they re-booted an historic women’s rights newspaper called the Revolution, first published by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony in January 1868.

Dombrowski and her family recently battled the coronavirus in her own home, and we’re thankful everyone is now well. She was kind enough to talk about that experience and also share a poem inspired by her experience during this episode.

Jules Nyquist
John Roche is a retired teacher and active poet from Placitas, NM

John Roche also joined us.

He’s a poet living in Placitas, New Mexico and is the partner of Jules Nyquist whom we featured in March.

We follow up on how Jules’ Poetry Playhouse is adapting and examine the questions: “What would Emily and Walt do?

Finally, we catch up with Nina Eleanya, an actress and burgeoning poet based in the Valley.

Nina K. Eleanya
Nina K. Eleanya is an actress and writer who lives in the Valley.


While she developed her voice performing in high school theatre, she’s relatively new to poetry. It’s fun to talk with people who are just beginning that particular writing journey.

Nina was kind enough to share a part of her poem, “A Boy from Athens,” with us and talk about how creatives are coping in the age of COVID-19.

We’d love to read your recommendations for future guests or get your thoughts on this specific episode, maybe even the series as a whole.

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