Our Response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak

As a precaution to help limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and care for our community, Just Buffalo Literary Center has postponed a number of events, and we will follow the guidance of Buffalo Public Schools in terms of Just Buffalo Writing Center programming.

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What a beautiful ending to a great season. Thank you Kiese Laymon for your warmth, your vulnerability, your humor, and your incredible work. Thank you to our audience, both at Kleinhans and at home—The magic of BABEL is because of all of you.

On October 20, 2023, we hosted our first reading and performance since 2019. Poet Micheal Dumanis read from his newest collection Creature (Four Way Books, 2023) and Sandra Simonds shared poems from her book Triptychs (Wave Books, 2022), as well as some new work. Musician Brian DeJesus gave us his first solo performance. It was a moving night. Thanks to everyone who came out to support poetry and music in downtown Buffalo.

Just Buffalo Literary Center’s Board of Directors announced today a planned leadership transition which will take place as of July 1st, 2023. Current Executive Director Laurie Dean Torrell will retire after 20 years of service, with Artistic & Associate Executive Director Barbara Cole assuming the role of Executive Director in addition to her duties as Artistic Director—ushering in a new era of community-building work.

I am moved, and a bit amused, that Just Buffalo would invite me to look back on a reading I did three decades ago, sharing an afternoon monologue marathon in June of 1989 at Ujima Theatre’s then-current space on Elmwood with Eileen Myles, the late, great Manny Fried, Tammy Ryan, Susan Hodge Anner, and Francine Witte.