Twice a month, poets and performers can take the microphone at the Nia Coffeehouse, held the first and third Tuesdays of each month at the . The coffee is rudimentary: a large urn filled with strong, black java; a stack of styrofoam cups, some sugar, creamer and utensils.
But the regulars don't come to drink. They come to speak, sing or play an instrument. On a rainy Tuesday, when Patch went to Nia, the chairs were empty. But that didn't stop Mike Barkoot, one of Cleveland's deaf poets, from delivering his poems.
Nor did Vince Robinson, pianist and Reginald Holmes, drummer, abandon their instruments. The members of the Jazz Poets played as if the room was full. When Wanda Sobieska joined, her violin sweetened the air on a chilly night.