Michelle Naka Pierce

Core Professor
Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics
(303) 245-4808
BA, University of New Mexico / MA, University of New Mexico, with distinction / MFA, Naropa University
BA Creative Writing & Literature, MFA Creative Writing (Low-Residency), MFA Creative Writing & Poetics
BA Creative Writing & Literature: Innovative Poetry / Embodied Poetics / Poetry in Theory / Ekphrastic Writing / Spring Writers Practicum / Writers in Community / Special Topics. MFA Creative Writing & Poetics: Writing Pedagogy Seminar / Spring Writers Practicum / Writers in Community / Experimental Poetry / Collaborative Texts / Contemplative Poetics / Somatic Writing / Text & Image / MFA Creative Thesis. MFA Creative Writing (low-res): Fall Residency / Spring Residency / Contemplative Experiments / Contemporary Trends / MFA Thesis

Award winning poet Michelle Naka Pierce is the author of nine titles, including four full-length books: TRI/VIA (Erudite Fangs/PUB LUSH), co-authored with Veronica Corpuz; Beloved Integer (Bootstrap/PUB LUSH); She, A Blueprint (BlazeVOX), with art by Sue Hammond West; and Continuous Frieze Bordering Red (Fordham), awarded the Poets Out Loud Editor’s Prize. Pierce has collaborated with artists, dancers, and filmmakers and performed her work internationally, most recently in the UK, France, and Japan. She founded and directed the Naropa Writing Center and Core Writing Seminars from 2000–2022 and served as the inaugural dean of the Kerouac School from 2011–2015 and as chair in 2016–2017. Her teaching and research interests include avant-garde poetry, hybrid forms, pedagogy, and embodied experiments. Born in Japan, she currently lives in Colorado with the poet Chris Pusateri and Shigin Sensei Michiko Masuda Pierce and is working on an erasure/recovery project surrounding estranged texts/bodies/memories.



  • TRI/VIA (Erudite Fangs/PUB LUSH), co-authored with Veronica Corpuz
  • Beloved Integer (Bootstrap/PUB LUSH)
  • She, A Blueprint (BlazeVOX), with art by Sue Hammond West
  • Continuous Frieze Bordering Red (Fordham), awarded the Poets Out Loud Editor’s Prize


  • 48 Minutes Left (Belladonna)
  • As Transient As Square or Inside 32 (Tir Aux Pigeons)
  • Symptom of Color (Dusie)
  • lunarium (Dusie)
  • Exposure co-authored with Yasamin Ghiasi (Summer Stock)


  • Dusie: the Asian Anglophone edition
  • women : poetry : migration
  • Litscapes: Collected US Writing
  • Hydrogen Jukebox: 40 Years of (Dis)embodied Poetics
  • Cross Worlds: Transcultural Poetics
  • For the Time Being: The Bootstrap Book of Poetic Journals
  • Saints of Hysteria: A Half-Century of Collaborative American Poetry
  • La Puerta: A Doorway into the Academy


  • Something on Paper

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Naropa Campuses Closed on Friday, March 15, 2024

Due to adverse weather conditions, all Naropa campuses will be closed Friday, March 15, 2024.  All classes that require a physical presence on campus will be canceled. All online and low-residency programs are to meet as scheduled.

Based on the current weather forecast, the Healing with the Ancestors Talk & Breeze of Simplicity program scheduled for Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday will be held as planned.

Staff that do not work remotely or are scheduled to work on campus, can work remotely. Staff that routinely work remotely are expected to continue to do so.

As a reminder, notifications will be sent by e-mail and the LiveSafe app.  

Regardless of Naropa University’s decision, if you ever believe the weather conditions are unsafe, please contact your supervisor and professors.  Naropa University trusts you to make thoughtful and wise decisions based on the conditions and situation in which you find yourself in.