Beat Babes, Brave-hearts & Bodhisattvas


The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics is rolling out Womxn of Naropa this year for the whole of Poetry Month! It’s how we’re embracing innovation in the pandemic, grateful for such time and opportunity to curate this whole month for you from our archive. Each week will have a focus: multiculturalism, gender queerness, sacred & profane, lyricism. Each day a new recording will be posted through our social media (FB/IG/Twitter @kerouacschool) culminating with recordings curated of current students, faculty, and alum, per usual.


If you’re new to this event, it was initiated by alumna Lark Fox as a way to celebrate the women who broke the cultural barrier on the male dominated, homo-social environment of the literary world. Women of Naropa has been many things “…being packed into the basement student lounge, belly dancers, pianists, death rituals, sound miracles (one year we almost had no sound system), bahnu writing one off love poems, BLH scolding the reading style of young poets, a plastic shower curtain backdrop, homemade programs and broadsides in cafes, wait lists of readers, always Anne, always flowers, always crowds, always cookies, always ritual and always poems…”.


We’ve now shifted from Women to Womxn in order to allow a broader spectrum of the embodiment of what it is to be female, feminine, femme, butch, dyke, all the way to the epicene body horizon. The feminine principle is inherent to the writing process as embryonic and nurturing language into being. This is the evolution of our sangha as cohort as lineage.
This year we cannot bring you the embodied practice that this reading is become, but we DO invite you to make your own altar to the Womxn of Naropa by grabbing their books, placing a candle, arranging other ephemera like pussy hats and feathers. At the end of the Poetry Month, you can check out our new SoundCloud & the playlist of the womxn in 2020 who were able to contribute their reading of original works to culminate this month-long marathon of feminist contemporary poetry!
Take a listen to one, some or all of these recordings and use these luminary gxdesses as inspiration to your practice this month.
If you require a transcript or close captioning of this content, please be in direct contact with Cassie Smith,, Naropa’s Digital Marketing Coordinator, to make those accommodations.
Also, be sure to explore our Master of Arts program in Creative Writing and Poetics!

April 1 –  5 [Introducing WoN Outrider Lineage]

Women Coming of Age in the Beat Generation: Being Writers and Being Women 

panel with

Anne Wadman intro; Hettie Jones; Bobbie Hawkins, Joane Kyger, Janine Pommy

Anne Waldman on Ecstatic Poetry
 Honoring the Muse: Boulder City Safehouse benefit with various participants

Honoring the Muse: Boulder City Safehouse benefit Pt. II 

Four Extraordinary Women, a lecture series by Bobbie Louise Hawkins

Marguerite Duras
Ruth Draper
Camille Paglia

 April 6 – 12 [Multi-cultural Womxn of Prismatic Thought]

Joy Harjo on Native American Women Writers

Joy Harjo on Native American Women Writers Pt. II

Revolutionary Women in Pan American Literature (Margaret Randall)

Revolutionary Women in Pan American Literature Pt. II

Women in Japanese Literature by Yuko Eishima
Student Women’s Panel 1996 

Miller, Lisa; Wright, Laura; Sumi; Hammond, Lisa; Bryant, Elizabeth; Kaiser-Shot, Julie Tatiana; McGovern, Kaitlin; Trank, Lisa; Skaggs, Sara
Cultural Activism and Writing

panel with

Kyger, Joanne;  Oliver, Akilah;  Sikelianos, Eleni;  Waldman, Anne.

Haiku: Japense and English Poetry a lecture series by Pat Donegan
Haiku pt. 2
Haiku pt. 3
Imagists: Modernists, Beats and on

April 13 – 19 [Transcending Binary Language Identities]

Feminism & Gender Panel

panel with

Kizershot, Julie (chair);   Torn, Tony;   Brown, LeeAnn;   DuPlessis, Michael;    Delany, Sam.

Feminism & Gender Panel Pt. II

Erica Hunt on Gender & Language
Politics of Identity/Gender/Queer Theory Panel

panel with

Blaser, Robin;   Delany, Sam.;   DuPlessis, Michael;   Field, Thalia;   Oliver, Akilah;   Myles, Eileen;   edwards, kari;   Tejada, Roberto;   Swenson, Cole (chair)

Politics of Identity/Gender/Queer Theory Panel Pt. II

Writing the Body/The Body Politic/Feminism & Gender 

panel with

Gladman, Renee;   Kyger, Joanne;   Mullen, Harryette;   Sikelianos, Eleni;   Taylor, Steven;   Waldman, Anne (moderator)

Writing the Body/The Body Politic?Feminism & Gender Pt. II

Kathy Acker Lecture

Gertrude Stein Marathon Reading with various participants

Gertrude Stein Marathon Reading Pt. II

Poetry in the 4th Dimension by LeeAnn Brown

April 20 – 26 [Sacred & Profane]

Feminist Attitudes through Buddhism

a discussion with

Dilly, Barbara;  Farrow, Rachel;  Waldman, Anne

African American Literacy Traditions: Spiritual and Secular by Harryette Mullen
Sacred & the Profane: Celebrating Paths of the Spirit in African-American Literature by Akila Oliver
Panel: Dharma Gaze: Buddhist and Native World View

panel with

Waldman, Anne (chair);  Kyger, Joanne;  Long Soldier, Layli;  Philip, M. Nourbese

That Still, Blue, Almost Eternal Hour: Touching the Sacred and the Profane in Sylvia Plath’s Last Poems by Cheryl Hemmerle
Rewriting the Bible  by Alicia Ostriker

Rewriting the Bible Pt. II

Kali Yuga Poetics by Anne Waldman

April 27-30

American Women in the Experimental Tradition by Joane Kyger
Shakespeare’s Sisters

panel with

Waldman, Anne; Tysh, Christine; Smedman, Lorna; Ostriker, Alicia; Hunt, Erica; Myles, Eileen; Augustine, Jane; Hawkins, Bobbie Louise

Measure and Meter by Alice Notley
I: The Lyric Self as Rhizome by Andrea Rexilius


In Solidarity,
Swanee Astrid, MFA 2016

S/He : He/r : He/rs

MFA Academic Advisor  & Summer Writing Program Coordinator

Women of Naropa