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News, Events & Community

Making poetry accessible to a wide audience has always been a part of The Boutelle-Day Poetry Center’s mission. In addition to special initiatives and facilitating poetry-related collaborations on campus, we regularly offer blocks of reserve seats at our readings to local schools and community groups. We donate a book by each visiting poet to the Northampton High School library, and we offer Smith students assistance with their annual poetry slam. We have collaborated on programming with The Emily Dickinson Museum, Northampton Arts Council, Sustainable Step New England and others.

Poetry Center Events

On the Radar

Blackout Poetry

This spring, as a campus, we’ll be taking Emily Post’s rules of etiquette and transforming them into something new. A common reassemble reenvisions the words and ideas of iconic works. Learn more about this exciting poetry project across campus!

Support our Local Bookstore!

Most books written, translated or edited by our series readers can be found online at Northampton’s Broadside Books

Interview With Director Matt Donovan

If it’s been a while since you’ve come by The Poetry Center to see what we’ve been up to, here is a fantastic interview with our director Matt Donovan in the Smith Alumnae Quarterly.



If possible, links to recordings of the current season’s readings will be posted soon after each event.

The Poetry Center has hosted hundreds of poets, including more than a dozen Pulitzer Prize winners and five Poets Laureate, as well as poets who are relatively unknown and whose work has been translated from other languages. We have recorded most readings, and they are available from the Neilson Library (on VHS up to 2006, and on DVD from 2006 onward).

Poet Readings


In 2009, local writer, teacher and interviewer Christian McEwen proposed that the Poetry Center partner with her in creating “Sparks from the Anvil,” a five-year project aimed at building an audio archive of interviews with poets. Select visiting poet interviews are available and offer lively conversations concerning the poets’ biographies, writing practices, influences and developments in their work, and their sense of the contemporary poetry scene.

Poet Audio Interviews

Poetry in the Community

30 Poems in November

The Poetry Center participates in 30 Poems in November, an annual initiative to raise funds for literacy programs.

Students at the Center for New Americans

The Care Center

The Poetry Center pairs with The Care Center to provide education and inspiration for pregnant and parenting teens.

Students at the Care Center in Holyoke

Voices from Inside

The Poetry Center helps coordinate creative writing workshops for incarcerated and recently released women.

Participants in Voices from Inside
A student reading a poem at a podium

Support Our Programming

Every gift helps, whether to fund a visit by a far-flung poet or to support our outreach activities, video and library collection or student staff. Donate online or make checks payable to Smith College and mail to The Boutelle-Day Poetry Center at Smith College, c/o Gift Accounting, Stoddard Annex, 23 Elm Street, Northampton, MA 01063. Thank you for your generous support!

Donate Online