"One-off performances and workshops by poets, musicians, and other entertainers are hugely popular in libraries and serve as valuable additions to a library’s program roster. But long-term partnerships or residencies mean that an artist works closely with a library to facilitate a suite of programs, integrating inspiring performances with hands-on learning opportunities. Artists-in-residence may be visual artists, writers, or performers.
An excellent example of a poet-in-residence program is found in the Cafe Poet project in Australia. Established by Australian Poetry in 2009, the Cafe Poet program “aims to promote poetry while strengthening community relationships.” So far about fifty poets have been placed in cafes, bookshops, and, in the City of Melbourne’s case, the City Library.
The exchange is beneficial for everyone: poets are given space to write (and complimentary tea/coffee), as well as the chance to engage with their community; the host gets to be part of the poetry community, plan events in conjunction with the poet, and (hopefully) increase foot traffic."