Poetry Workshops

The DRP Summer Series 2-15

Voicing Our Times

Poetry with Mel Cooke 

People not Characters

Short Story - Sharon Leach

Sculpting The Draft

Short Story - Lenworth Burke


Past Projects 

Writers' Retreat 2015

Creative conversations in the heart of St Ann

The DRP Writers' Retreat will be held at Liberty Hill Great House, Lime Hall St Ann's Bay, St Ann, Jamaica.

June 5, 2015 - June 7, 2015.   The retreat culminates in a reading of the residents and the mentor.

Meet Mervyn Morris - 2015 Mentor 

These workshops bring people of all disciplines and background to the creative task of expression through poetic forms.  The purpose of the workshop is to create meaning from common human expereinces.

Mervyn Morris, OM., Professor Emeritus of Creative Writing and West Indian Literature at the University of the West Indies and Poet Laureate of Jamaica is the author of: Is English We Speaking (1999), Making West Indian Literature (2005), Miss Lou, Louise Bennett and Jamaican Culture (2015) and six books of poetry including, The Pond (1973) and I been there, sort of (2006).
The DRP ePamplet, Fire Stick
January 30, 2015

This taster of 26 poems, explore nature, folklore, love, loss and remembrance, with all the rich textures of the Jamaican landscape, language. These voices, some tamed, some untameable, are the voices you have been expecting. 

Millicent A. A. Graham
Hyacinth Hall
Joni Jackson
Mary Kuck
Emma Lewis
Ann-Margaret Lim
Raymond Mair
Mezan Ayoka Morris
Avi Miller
Twanda Rolle
Phillippa Sauterel

DRP Summer Series 2014

Meet The Writers

Mel Cooke is a Journalist and author of 11/9, Blouse and Skirt Books, 2008.  His first collection of poetry, which was adapted into an award-winning dramatic production by Jamaica Youth Theatre in 2008.

In 2003 he represented the Poetry Society of Jamaica at the Calabash International Literary Festival, and performed in The International Dub Festival (Toronto, Canada) and the Reggae Month Live Music Series. 

A fellow of the Calabash International Literary Trust, 2006, his work has also appeared in the Jamaica Journal and anthologized in So Much Things to Say: 100 Poets From the First 10 Years of Calabash and Jubilation!.

His  second anthology, the audio collection ‘Seh Supm’: Live From Kingston was released  in 2013.

Sharon Leach is the author of the short story collection What You Can’t Tell Him, and most recently  Love It When You Come, Hate It When You Go.

A featured columnist for the Jamaica Observer, and the coordinator and editor of that publication’s weekly literary arts supplement, “Bookends.” Her fiction has appeared in several journals, including AfroBeat Journal, Caribbean Writing Today, and Jamaica Journal.

 She was one of the first recipients of a scholarship to the Calabash Writers Workshop and, in 2011, she was awarded The Musgrave Bronze Medal from the council of the Institute of Jamaica

Lenworth Burke writes fiction primarily, and his short stories and poems have been published 

in the anthologies: Focus 1983; So Much Things To Say (Calabash); and in the Bearing Witness series (the Jamaica Observer). 

His work has also appeared in periodicals including Jamaica Journal and in newspapers in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.

He was long-listed in the inaugural Hollick Arvon Caribbean Writers Prize in 2013 (the Bocas Lit Fest), and won first prize in fiction in the Jamaica Observer Literary Awards 2000. He is a fellow of the Cropper Foundation of Trinidad and Tobago and was a long-standing member of the Wayne Brown Writers’ Workshop. 

He is a commercial lawyer in private practice.

The DRP Writers' Retreat - March 2014

Country Thyme offers a unique sampling of Jamaica’s eco-tourism, (birds, hiking trails, nearby rivers) set in a country culture, where women can make chocolate “tea”; bammies (cassava bread) for breakfast, run down dishes, coconut oil for inner or outer body.

This project seeks to take artists in Film,  Visual Art, Writing, Music off the beaten track to participate in workshops inspired by community living.

The inaugural workshop will be held May 23, 2014 with Christine Craig 

Meet Christine Craig - 2014 Mentor of The DRP Writers' Retreat

Christine Craig was born in Kingston, Jamaica but spent much of her early years in rural St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. 

She is a graduate of the University of the West Indies and has published short stories, poems and children’s fiction. Her latest collection of poems: All Things Bright was published by Peepal Tree Press, UK in Dec.2010.

" Craig's consistent juxtaposition of vantage points and penchant of making striking transitions between the Jamaican English and its undisturbed British co-parent, gives ‗All Things Bright‘ a distinctive tone."

- Mel Cooke, The Gleaner, Jamaica

" Some demanding, some coercing, some entreating, some coyly teasing us - Craig's poems take us on journeys deep deep into the realms of national belonging, national language, memory, history, myth, tradition, family, culture, exile, life, pain, injustice, and too, in the best possible sense of the word, into righteousness."

Heather Russell Ph.D., Florida International University

DRP Summer Series - July 2013

Giving Things Names


Mask, Word, Drums

Millicent A. A. Graham is a Jamaican Poet whose first collection The Damp In Things was published by Peepal Tree Press in 2009.  

The Fairbanks International Fellow at The Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference in 2010, Honorary Fellow in Writing at the University of Iowa's International Writing Program in 2009 and a fellow of the Calabash International Literary Trust.  

Her 2nd collection, The Way Home, is expected this year also by Peepal Tree Press. Millicent currently leads the DRP Writers Workshop: A closed group for published and aspiring Jamaican poets. 

Ann-Margaret Lim’s first poetry collection, THE FESTIVAL OF WILD ORCHID ( Peepal Tree Press, 2012), received a UK Guardian First Book nomination two months after its publication, and in February of 2013 made the prestigious Bocas Prize long list. Her book is among 4 in the poetry category.   

She has been published in several Caribbean-centered journals, the Pittsburg Quarterly; the two major Jamaican newspapers, and three poetry anthologies. She has been shortlisted in the Small Axe Literary Competition (poetry); received the National Book  Development Council of Jamaica’s Highly Recommended Award (2006) (poetry).

Mbala is largely concidered a procucionist and musician.  The chapbook Light in a Book of Stone ( Calabash International Literary Festival Chapbook Series, 2005) is the only collection that represents over 40 years of poetry and performance art.

A three time Gold Medalist in the Jamaica Culteral Development Commission's Literary Competition and a Fellow of the ***, He has been published in numerous anthologies, including Focus 82, Wheel and Come Again, An Anthology of Reggae Poetry, Voice Print and So Much Things to Say and The Oxford Book of Caribbean Verse.

Future Projects

Street Arias

Imagine the bustle of downtown, Kingston; add a sea breeze, the shadow of an old Opera House and Nessum Dorma from Puccini's Turandot.  

This project seeks to impose new sounds on familiar sounds and simply observe what happens.  From traditional arias to famous jazz rifts these pieces would be played or performed in markets, parks and other public areas.  Volunteers needed