Saturday, April 25, 2020

Art House Seeks Submissions for Collaborative Jersey City Community Poem Project

Art House Productions is accepting submissions for the Jersey City Community Poem Project.

To celebrate National Poetry Month, Art House will create an original, digital community poem with the theme “Life in the Pandemic and Beyond: Quarantine, Devastation, and Hope for the Future.” Jersey City’s Poet Laureate, Rashad Wright will curate the poem. This project is sponsored by the City of Jersey City and Office of Cultural Affairs.

Submissions can be a haiku, free verse or a rhyming poem, whatever your creative energy tells you, but submit no more than 10 lines. Writers must be currently based in New Jersey. In order to participate, please fill out the submission form before Saturday, May 9 at 5:00pm EST. Please click here to submit:

Rashad will take lines and excerpts from submissions and create a crowdsourced, community poem. Once the poem is created, Art House will publish it online, where contributors will be credited, and seek video submissions of community members performing the original work to be compiled in a video presentation. This unique time is worth preserving so that we can help future generations understand the experience of being quarantined in 2020.

“Art House is excited to partner with Jersey City Cultural Affairs and actively engage the arts community around a collaborative work of art. My hope is that the poem and subsequent video project created will be a kind of artistic time capsule for what we are all currently experiencing around COVID-19. The act of creation will be healing to the many artists who will participate and the work of art itself will be cathartic to all those that will experience it,” says Meredith Burns, Executive Director of Art House.

This is a community-based and community-centered project and we hope the final poem will be inclusive and accessible to all ages. Please be considerate of this as you craft your submission.

“We want to give New Jersey residents the opportunity to be creative and introspective with their submissions. Once the poem is complete, we hope it will bring artists and audiences in our community together,” says Producing Director Courtney Little.

For more information, please visit or email


Rashad Wright (Curator) is the poet laureate of Jersey City, New Jersey. He is a graduate of New Jersey City University, receiving his BA in English: Creative Writing. Rashad’s poetry has been heard from both local and national stages via slam poetry. He is the only person to be titled the “Grandslam Champion of Jersey City Slam” twice. He has competed in Slams in Oakland, San Diego, Spokane, and Denver, once ranking 25th in the country. He has coached Jersey City Slam, the UACHS Poetry Club, and 6th Borough Slam whom placed 10th in the world at Brave New Voices 2019. Rashad’s creative works focus on debunking the glorification of selflessness and sacrifice in communities of color and other disenfranchised groups. Rashad’s work gives visibility to a “self” in an attempt to reclaim the love that these identities deserve. He currently is the host of ManaMic, Jersey City’s biggest open mic series and has published a fusion of memoir and poetry titled Romeo’s Whiskey. Instagram @write_raw

Art House is working creatively to deliver digital content during this pandemic. While the doors to our physical space might be temporarily closed, we are here in the digital space as a source of strength, creativity, humor, and light when you need a bit of inspiration and affirmation.

In the coming days, weeks, and months, we're planning artist features & profiles, performance videos, online galleries, and livestreaming community events! For information about upcoming digital events and features, please visit, along with our Facebook, Twitter & Instagram for more information. To sign up for Art House's mailing list, please click here:

Art House Productions is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to the development and presentation of the performing and visual arts in Jersey City, NJ. Art House Productions presents theater, performing and visual arts festivals, arts events, visual art exhibitions, and adult and youth art classes. For more information about our programs, please visit our website at Follow us on social media @arthouseproductions @arthouseprods.