A new literary center in the heart of New York's Hudson Valley.



Poetry Barn, a new literary center, sits in the heart of the Hudson Valley's 700,000-acre Catskill Park. Surrounded by the mighty Ashokan Reservoir and featuring 180 degree Catskill and Shawungunk mountain views, we take nature as our inspiration and act as a pollinator habitat for art.


Former home of the Harry Everett Smith Memorial Library, a member of the Beats, the barn is designed from the ground up for wonder, inquiry, and contemplation. A 24 x 36' post and beam structure stocked with volumes of poetry, the barn serves as poetry resource to the community by sponsoring workshops, readings, craft talks, and book arts for all ages.  


The woods belong to the hunters of dreams, the brooks to the fishers of songs.

~ Sam Walter Foss, poet and librarian

When visiting, reserve some time to wander and be renewed by natural beauty. We sit by the spillway of the Ashokan Reservoir, at the edge of Catskill Park, included in Fodor's Go List of 25 can't-miss spots of 2015. Strike out on one of its many trailheads, or enjoy a journey to one of the area's hidden waterfalls, lakes, or swimming holes. 


A passion for poetry.

We subscribe to the qualities of open-mindedness, play, responsiveness, and mutual respect. We believe the real magic happens not only when students learn from teachers, but teachers from students, too. We hold ourselves to the highest standards to ensure your experience is sui generis. 


An environment where great ideas are nurtured in a professional, warm manner. The quality of faculty is equal to any live professional workshop I have participated in including the San Miguel Poetry Week.
— Lois P. Jones, poet and host of Poets Cafe (Pacifica Radio) in Los Angeles and co-producer of Moonday East and West
I have grown in confidence, in ability, in critical judgment - the workshops and the ripples afterwards have made me feel I’m part of a community of writers.
— Kim Peter Kovac, Producing Director, Theater for Young Audiences, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
The workshop was a fabulous experience for me and helped to break a bad block I have had for a while! I was able to comfortably fit the assignments into my very busy work week because of the online format, and ended up generating more pieces than were required for the course.
— Ami Kaye, Publisher & Editor of Glass Lyre Press and Pirene’s Fountain
It is not at all an exaggeration to say that Poetry Barn has provided me with a poetry community with whom I can have conversations without any fear. I couldn’t have asked for a better place that would allow me to accomodate poetry writing, while working full-time in an academic job.
— Nandini Dhar, publisher of Elsewhere Lit
A sui generis seismic experience. No other cyberhub has so fruitfully convulsed the creative tectonics of my mind.
— Chris Crittenden, Professor, University of Maine, Machias