The Washington Friends of Walt Whitman is pleased to announce a city-wide festival which will take place between March 26 (the date of Whitman's death) and May 31 (Whitman's birth) in 2005.  These dates include the month of April, National Poetry Month.

Events are designed to highlight the 150th anniversary of the first publication of a masterpiece of American literature, Leaves of Grass, and Whitman’s connection to Washington, DC, where he lived and worked from 1863 to 1873.  During this period, the poet published his poignant poems of the Civil War, Drum Taps, and his elegies to Lincoln, “O Captain! My Captain!” and “When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d,” all while earning his living as a civil servant. 

All events will have free or low-cost admissions. For more information, contact

NEW! Read articles on the festival printed in The Washington Post and The Washington Blade.

Coordinating Committee

Kim Roberts, Chair
Editor, Beltway Poetry Quarterly

Steven Lee Carson
Trustee, United States Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission

Patricia Gray
Coordinator, Poetry at Noon
Library of Congress, Office of Scholarly Programs

Dr. Saundra Rose Maley
Adjunct Professor of English, The George Washington University

Mark W. Meinke
Chair and Founder, Rainbow History Project
Director of Finance & Administration, The Wellness Community - National

Martin Murray
President and Founder, Washington Friends of Walt Whitman
Economist, Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Mark Ohnmacht
Executive Director, Cathedral Choral Society
Member, Arts Club of Washington

Neil Richardson
Senior Associate, Communities of the Future
Sherwood Smith
Emeritus, City University of New York
Executive Committee, Washington Assn. of Oldest Inhabitants

Dr. Rosemary Winslow
Associate Professor of English, Catholic University of America