The Innisfree Poetry Bookstore & Cafe in Boulder, Colorado on University Hill, was founded in 2010. As one of three exclusively-poetry bookstores in the United States, Innisfree Poetry Bookstore & Cafe creates and fosters a daily, living space for lovers of poetry, of all ages.
Kate and Brian, the owners, met in graduate school in poet Lloyd Schwartz’ s Poetry Workshop and have carried their love of poetry with them into this space. They hope that the store allows poets and lovers of poetry to gather formally and informally in order to promote the discovery that writing and reading poetry brings forth.
The Innisfree Poetry Bookstore & Cafe has poetry books for readers of all ages. The store also proudly carries Conscious Coffees, the award winning Boulder-based coffee roaster dedicated to the pursuit of Fair Trade and Organic coffee all over the world.
Why the name of the store?
“We picked the name Innisfree for several reasons. When we met, we frequented Walden Pond in Massachusetts often – for its beauty and to honor Henry David Thoreau’s pursuit. William Butler Yeats said that he wrote his poem ‘The Lake Isle of Innisfree’ because his father used to read him passages from Walden as a boy. He found it quite inspiring and wanted to write about his own Walden. The island Innisfree rests in Lough Gill in County Sligo in Ireland and Yeats used to imagine himself living there the way Thoreau did in Walden.
All in all, we love Walden, both the piece of literature and the place. We love that Thoreau’s writings reached across an ocean and inspired a great poet, and we hope our store
is an island in the busy world for similar retreats into self. Innisfree means Island of Heather – our poetry books will be our heather.” -Kate and Brian