The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Jul 22, 2013

O, Miami in the news

Posted by Valerie Nahmad

O, Miami, Miami's first monthlong poetry festival, made the press this weekend. The Sun Sentinel's Stephen Goldstein called the festival a revolution, writing: "It started in 2011, gained momentum this year, and has the potential to transform the region for the good beyond our wildest collective imaginations. And it's all because of poetry."

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Reprinted from

The originality and energy of "O, Miami" ( caught me by surprise — out-of-character for South Florida, a happening more natural to culturally grown-up places like New York, Boston or San Francisco. Cunningham was inspired by the Knight Foundation's Random Acts of Culture Program, which funds artistic performances in unlikely places in eight cities around the country. (Think 650 singers performing Handel's Hallelujah Chorus in a Macy's in Philadelphia.)

"O, Miami" has its share of traditional events with well-known poets who wend their way to the festival. It has challenged anyone to write a poem beginning or ending with "That's so Miami." The best are archived at But the uniqueness of "O, Miami" explodes from whimsical projects, 18 of them in 2013.


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