This event is included with your admission to Dow Gardens or purchase of an annual pass. 

Friday, July 14
7:00PM - 8:00PM
Dow Gardens

Come enjoy an evening of delightful poetry written and read by Skip Renker, Larry Levy, Janet Yerby, Hannah Nelson and Jeff Vande Zande. Following the reading, enjoy light refreshments while you get to know the poets outside the home of Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow.


F. W. “Skip” Renker of Midland, Michigan has published poems in numerous journals and anthologies, including The Atlanta Review, Poetry Midwest, and Passages North, as well as two collections, Birds of Passage (Delta Press), and Sifting the Visible (Mayapple Press).  His most recent collection is Bearing the Cast, St. Julian Press.  Professor Emeritus at Delta College, he teaches writing, meditation, and world religions courses and workshops, and is married to Julia Fogarty, also an English professor. 


Larry Levy’s new poetry collection, All the Dead are Holy (Atmosphere Press), is available on both the Amazon and Barnes and Noble websites.  An earlier book I Would Stay Forever If I Could and New Poems is in a second expanded printing from Mayapple Press. He has also published Three Things That Have Nothing to Do With Teaching, a collection of reflective logs.

Retired from teaching at every level from pre-school to graduate school, Larry and his wife Cheryl live in Midland, Michigan where they direct plays and conduct workshops on acting and writing for the Midland Center for the Arts.


Dr. Janet Yerby is a retired Professor Emerita from Central Michigan University in the department of Communication and Theatre where she taught undergraduate and graduate students and conducted research in Interpersonal Communication for twenty-two years. She has authored a book on family communication, Understanding Family Communication, and published several articles on small group communication, communication and education and the function of narrative in family communication. A lover of reading and writing poetry since she was a young person, Dr. Yerby has used her retirement to pursue her interest in writing and performing poetry. She has read her poems at festivals, conferences and arts events. She believes that the performance of poetry helps to overcome isolation, heal wounds and reinforce our common humanity.


Hannah Nelson is a poet and private music teacher. She attended Central Michigan University and Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives with her husband, Mike, and their beloved cat, Figaro, here in her hometown of Midland.


Jeff Vande Zande teaches fiction writing and screenwriting at Delta College, and has been writing poetry for over 25 years. His poems have appeared in numerous literary magazines and journals, in addition to being nominated for Pushcart Prizes. His poem “Clean” was selected by Poet Laureate Ted Kooser to appear in Kooser’s syndicated newspaper column American Life in Poetry.

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