A black and white photo of a man and woman with tattoos.

“… forget your ideas about what poetry is or isn’t. This artist has walked on dangerous ground, emerged from the dark depths of the mind to tell us what she has seen. It makes for powerful stuff….” Jane Roberti /Chicago Jazz & Blues News

“Chicago performance poet Jean Howard has produced a first book of amazing quality and depth that bites you in the ass. Come closer if you dare.” – Daniel Gallick/Letter X Poetry Newsletter

“Jean Howard puts words to human chaos . . .” – Joanne Trestrail/Managing Editor – Chicago Magazine


After living in Chicago for 22 years, performance poet, Jean Howard, returned to her hometown, Salt Lake City, Utah in 1999. Her poetry has appeared in Harper's Magazine, The Burning World, Spoon River Review, Chicago Tribune, Spoken Work Revolution, and over one hundred other literary publications.

A participant in the original development of the internationally acclaimed "Poetry Slam”, she was awarded two grants for the publication of her book, Dancing In Your Mother's Skin (Tia Chucha Press), a collaborative work with photographer, Alice Hargrave.

Howard has performed her poetry at hundreds of venues nationwide, with such diversity as Chicago’s Big Goddess Powwow, the Guggenheim’s “Art of the Motorcycle Exhibit” at the Field Museum, Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, The Harold Washington Cultural Center, the Salt Lake Arts Festival, Utah Humanities Book Festival, as well as churches, coffee shops, mortuaries, art galleries, pet shops, festivals, biker bars and of course the famous Green Mill where the “Slam” began.

Currently, Jean has participated in Salt Lake’s growing performance poetry scene with organizations as Brolly Arts, Utah Humanities, Women of the World Poetry Slam, City Arts, The Leonardo, and the Sundance Film Festival.

She organized the annual National Poetry Video Festival sponsored by Chicago’s Museum Of Contemporary Art and the Guild Complex for eight years, with her own award-winning video poems airing on PBS, cable TV, and festivals around the nation.

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