Poetry Is Alive in Boulder!


One of the few all-poetry bookstores in the U.S. is located right here in Boulder – Innisfree Poetry, Bookstore, and Cafe.

By Matthew Wilburn King


One of the few all-poetry bookstores in the U.S. is located right here in Boulder.

Brian Buckley and Katherine Hunter opened Innisfree Poetry Bookstore & Café—named after William Butler Yeats’ “The Lake Isle of Innisfree”—in 2010, and quickly expanded the business footprint on University Hill. The store sells anthologies alongside contemporary, foreign and Colorado poetry, with a side of pastries and espresso drinks.

On Tuesday nights, join a lively group for open readings. It’s a great way to share your poems or writings and connect with others who love the discipline.

In October 2018, I had the privilege to give a booktalk at Innisfree and decided to share, for the first time, one of my poems titled My Ode to Nature: a Message of Love. Although I was at the bookstore to conduct a reading of my contribution to Global Chorus: 365 Voices on the Future of the Planet as well as a selection of my favorite contributions by other authors, I had a desire to share this poem honoring nature.

I rarely write poems, but if the desire arises I always capture the words that flow freely from the heart over the mind. If you’re in Boulder and have a poem to share, join others at Innisfree, connect, read, and enjoy the readings shared by others. Brian Buckley and Katherine Hunter have truly created a culture and a space for poets to thrive in Boulder.

Notable poets who have read at Innisfree include Nobel nominee Ernesto Cardenal (Nicaragua), Homero Aridjis (Mexico) and Sinéad Morrissey (Northern Ireland). At Innisfree, you may not find a man with a pipe in a smoking jacket, but you’ll definitely encounter an eclectic group of people with a wide range of interests.