Mary Jane Ryals: Poet Laureate
Mary Jane Ryals is the Poet Laureate of Florida's Big Bend Region. Nominated in 2008, Ryals will hold the title until 2012. She brings the world of poetry to schools and literary events in Leon, Wakulla, Jefferson, and other north Florida counties. Her latest book of poems is The Moving Waters, published by Kitsune Press in 2008.

Ryals has been involved with the Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Competition, Florida State University's Valencia, Spain Study Abroad Program, the Tallahassee Writers' Association Festival of Books, and the literary magazine,Apalachee Review. Mary Jane has just won the 2010 bronze metal from the Florida Book Awards for her novel, Cookie & Me.


Performing Poetry

The Black Dog Java Girls:

are a performance poetry troupe: (from left to right) Lynne Knight, Melanie Rawls, Mary Jane Ryals (at the microphone), Laura Newton, and Donna Decker (not in photo). In this photo, they perform to music provided by The Spheres.
Please contact Mary Jane Ryals at for more information.