Last Monday Reading Series

Join us for an evening of poetry and prose as we celebrate the spoken word.

2024 Schedule

Every last Monday of the month at 8 p.m. This is a free, public, non-ticketed event.

March 25

  • Crystal Wilkinson was the Poet Laureate of Kentucky from 2021 to 2023. She is the award-winning author of Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts, a culinary memoir, Perfect Black (poems), and the three works of fiction The Birds of Opulence, Water Street, and Blackberries, Blackberries. Wilkinson's poems, short stories, and essays have appeared most recently in The Atlantic, The Kenyon Review, STORY, Agni Literary Journal, Emergence, Oxford American, and Southern Cultures, and she is currently a Bush-Holbrook Professor in creative writing at the University of Kentucky.

  • Julia Johnson, author of Naming the Afternoon (poems), The Falling Horse, and, most recently, Subsidence, teaches creative writing at the University of Kentucky. Her poems have appeared in Third Coast, Poetry International, Cake Train, Blackbird, Washington Square, Sentence, Isle: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment, and The Southern Poetry Anthology Volume IV: Louisiana (2012).

April 29

  • Frank X Walker is a superpower of Southern literature, a professor and Director of Creative Writing at the University of Kentucky, and a recipient of numerous fellowships, residences, and awards, some of which include Cave Canem, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Kentucky Arts Council, the 2014 NAACP Image Award for Poetry, and the Black Caucus American Library Association Honor Award for Poetry. He coined the term "Affriliachia," and founded the Affrilachian Poets. He has published ten collections of poetry, and his latest work is Masked Man, Black: Pandemic & Protest Poems.


Free parking is available at 446 East High Street (look for the Kentucky Native Café sign). Limited parking is also available at Michler's main entrance at 417 East Maxwell Street. Kentucky Native Café is typically closed Mondays; doors will open at 7:30 p.m.

Past Events

January 29

Bobbie Ann Mason, award-winning novelist, memoirist, and short-fiction writer, is one of
the crowning jewels of Kentucky and the South. She published her most recent novel, Dear Ann, in 2020.

John Lackey, poet, painter, printer, filmmaker, songwriter, and woodcarver, is a Lexington native working out of his studio, Homegrown Press Studio and Gallery on North Limestone.

February 26

Carrie Mullins is a novelist and short-fiction writer whose work has appeared in Chicago Quarterly Review, Appalachian Heritage, Kudzu, and the anthology Appalachia Now: Short Stories of Contemporary Appalachia in 2015. Her first novel, Night Garden, was published in 2016. She is a native of Mount Vernon, Kentucky.

Richard Taylor, poet laureate of Kentucky from 1999 to 2001, co-owner of Poor Richard's Books in Frankfort, two-time recipient of creative-writing fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts as well as an Al Smith Award from the Kentucky Arts Council, retired after fourteen years from Transylvania University as Keenan Visiting Writer. His latest release, Fathers, is a biographical collection of essays.