OK Avant Garde

March 1st


Since 2010, the annual Oklahoma Avant Garde spoken word event has been highlighting writers working at the cutting edge of language, challenging the definition of poetry, and exploring new genres of writing. Beginning in the 1950s with poets like Manley Johnson, Ron Padgett, Fran Ringold, and Ted Berrigan, Tulsa has a long tradition of attracting and producing poets who push the boundaries of sense and sensibility.

This event gathers many poets from around Oklahoma and the region working in this tradition today who see language as a plastic medium, like paint or clay, that can be shaped, scraped, and scrapped in many different ways that embody contemporary life in the 21st Century. Clever and savvy, yet never pretentious, these poets promise an evening of fun and provocative experiments in word and sound.

GRANT MATTHEW JENKINS teaches writing at the University of Tulsa. He is the author of Poetic Obligation: Ethics in Experimental American Poetry after 1945 (U of Iowa Press, 2008) and has published two books of poetry, Joy of God and Other Series (Blackbird, 2003) and the most recent in collaboration with Cheryl Pallant, Morphs (Cracked Slab, 2009). His poems appear in Source Material, Used Cat., Birddog, Cannibal, Sugar Mule, Syntax, Action Yes, and Big Bridge.


Programming begins at 8 pm.

Tony B

Janie Luper

Quraysh Ali Lansana

Heber Hurd

Dennis Dennisoff

Timothy Bradford

Jonathan Stalling


Randy Prus

Haley Ashworth

Caleb Freeman

ML Martin

Brennan Gray

Bruce Dean Willis

Jessica Borusky