Become A Recurring Donor

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Together we elevate the power of Black poetry.

Notebooks & Pens is a passionate community of recurring donors that provides vital and sustainable support to advancing Cave Canem’s mission.

Recurring donors receive a monthly recording of an original poem by a Black poet and will be able to experience gatherings throughout the year, bringing them closer to Cave Canem’s programs and more.

Become a Recurring Donor.
With as Little as $5,
Join Notebooks & Pens Today.

The Impact of Your Investment in Black Poetry

The year 2021 marks Cave Canem’s 25th year of operation, a significant milestone for a small non-profit and a poetry organization independent of a publishing company or university. Your recurring donations are essential to securing the next 25 years and bolstering our commitment to Black poets. When non-profit arts organizations maintain a healthy balance of support from individuals and institutional funders, they are better positioned for long-term financial stability and afforded greater flexibility in the programs and services afforded to its community of artists.


While individual gifts currently make up only 13% of Cave Canem’s budget, sustained contributions ensure that Cave Canem can impact future generations of poets and readers. As a recurring donor you provide essential support to Black poets and our audiences by:


  • sustaining the cost of public programs such as poetry readings, lectures, master classes, and special events, which keep poetry enthusiasts from all walks of life artistically engaged, stimulated and inspired;
  • supporting the execution of two new public programs which provide more professional opportunities for artists of color;
  • ensuring that community writing workshops, book prizes and the annual retreat remain free to apply;
  • allowing for artists who participate in Cave Canem programs as readers, moderators, faculty, instructors, prize judges, and more to receive increased and market-rate honoraria;
  • supporting the cost of transportation, room-and-board, as well as tuition for the annual writing retreat, making attendance for Black poets a reality;
  • allowing for the execution of Cave Canem book prizes, which launches careers and increases the publication of Black poets in the literary field; and
  • providing professional development opportunities for emerging Black arts administrators, sustaining the overall operations of the organization, and so much more!
Become a Recurring Donor.
Join Notebooks & Pens Today.

“…when you look at all the poets whose work has blossomed under the arbor of Cave Canem, you see an actual transformation of American literature. It’s been the most extraordinary thing happening in American literature in all the time I’ve been working.”

–Elizabeth Alexander,
Founding Cave Canem Faculty Member
& 2008 U.S. Inaugural Poet