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.

May 27

  • Tarence Ray is a journalist and co-host of the podcast Trillbilly Worker's Party living in Lexington. He has published stories in The Baffler, The Nation, interviewed with This is Hell! podcast, and created a video series on Means TV, among other things.
  • Melissa Bell-Pitts is a burgeoning novelist and former journalist living in Lexington. She teaches writing classes at the Carnegie Center for Learning and Literacy. She was selected as a finalist in the Next Great Writer Contest and the Kentucky Women Writers Conference's Betty Gabehart Prize. Her work has been featured in New Growth: Recent Kentucky Writings, Limestone: A Journal of Art and Literature, Undead: A Poetry Anthology, and I to I: Life Writing by Kentucky Feminists. She earned her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her first book, The Arc of the Mallet, is expected to be published in 2025.


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


Bobbie Ann Mason, award-winning novelist, memoirist, and short-fiction writer, is one of
the crowning jewels of Kentucky and the South.

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.


Carrie Mullins is a novelist and short-fiction writer. 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 and co-owner of Poor Richard's Books in Frankfort, retired after fourteen years from Transylvania University as Keenan Visiting Writer. His latest release, Fathers, is a biographical collection of essays.


Crystal Wilkinson was the Poet Laureate of Kentucky from 2021 to 2023, and she is currently a Bush-Holbrook Professor in creative writing at the University of Kentucky. Her latest release is Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts, a culinary memoir.

Julia Johnson, author of Naming the Afternoon (poems), The Falling Horse, and, most recently, Subsidence, teaches creative writing at the University of Kentucky.


Frank X Walker is a a professor and Director of Creative Writing at the University of Kentucky. He has published ten collections of poetry, and his latest work is Load in Nine Times.

Jim Embry is a gardener, speaker, organizer, photographer, and essayist, and has an extensive background in community and civil-rights activism. His work, Jim Embry Reader: Black and Green, is set to be published late 2024.