Poetry is interwoven with music, dance and visual arts during the sixth annual Belfast Poetry Festival. Some of the festival’s perennial poet/artist collaborations already are on view in the city’s galleries and art center, while others will exist for a brief moment in time Saturday, Oct. 16, during the festival’s popular Poetry and Art Gallery Walk.

Belfast Poet Laureate Linda Buckmaster and a dedicated committee have organized the festival, one of the only community-based, non-academic poetry festivals in the country. In addition to the 10 professional poets, eight visual artists, two dancers and an a cappella ensemble chosen to present, the Belfast Poetry Festival provides a showcase for emerging poets to share their work in its opening Maine Poets Old Home Night event Friday, Oct. 15.

Old Home Night, open to any and all Maine poets, will begin at 7 p.m. at Belfast Free Library, 106 High St.; signup is at 6:30 p.m. Every poet, lauded and unknown, is invited to pick out one or two favorite works to read. Maximum time is three minutes, but readings can be shorter.

“Last year, we had a wonderful diversity of voices, ages and styles. We definitely laughed and cried,” said Buckmaster.

The festival opening proper is set for 1 p.m. Saturday at the Belfast Dance Studio, 109 High St. Dancer Helena Melone will perform a piece to a Celtic poem; and VoXX, the a cappella artists formerly known as Ave Maris Stella, will present selections from their recent concert program “Poetry in Music: The Bard and Other Muses.”

“This is a wonderful chance to hear this special group,” said Buckmaster.

The first of the festival’s collaborations will follow, presented by Rockland poet Carol Bachofner and Freedom dancer Joan Proudman. The women said they hope their work will send festival-goers out to the enjoy the rest of the Poetry and Art Gallery Walk inspired.

Bachofner and Proudman had never met before being paired up by Buckmaster and the festival committee and both are pleased with how well the work they are doing is coming about.

“Linda knows us both and thought we would do well together; she was right,” said Proudman.

Bachofner, who organized the inaugural Poetry Month Rockland in April, sent Proudman a selection of poems, of which she said she had a few especially in mind.

“I sent her a stack of poems, she read through them and it turns out the poems she got ideas about were the same ones I had ideas about,” said Bachofner.

“When I read her poems, I said yes, I can dance to this,” said Proudman, describing how she worked on her end of the collaboration by dancing around, holding the papers in front of her.

Bachofner is the author of numerous published poems, as well as two collections of poetry, “Daughter of the Ardennes Forest” (a post-World War II memoir in verse) and the recent “Breakfast at the Brass Compass: Poems of Midcoast Maine.” She is the founding editor of Pulse Literary Journal and co-chairwoman of the Maine Literary Festival. She will read four poems in her collaboration with Proudman.

Proudman trained with the Classical Ballet Academy of Connecticut and the Boston Ballet. In Maine, she was a soloist with the Portland Ballet and full-time member of Ram Island Dance Company. She has taught ballet and modern dance with Portland Ballet, Ram Island Dance, People to People, Bossov Ballet and Belfast Dance Studio. She has presented original work in the annual “Women’s Works” show; this year, “Women’s Works” took place at the Belfast Dance Studio, which will celebrate 25 years Saturday, Oct. 23.

Bachofner and Proudman’s collaboration will begin with the two women seated on stools, facing away from each other. They will be dressed simply and use no props. The first poem, “Worship,” will be read with no accompaniment of any kind. Then recorded music by young Icelandic artist Olafur Arnalds will begin to mix with Bachofner’s readings. Proudman will stand and begin dancing in the background as Bachofner reads her poems “Come Home to the Sea,” “Allow the Years” and “Polaris.” That final poem will be accompanied by the music of Balmorhea.

The presentation ends with the women, who have been separate for the rest, standing together in silence. Because the poems and dance are linked, the audience will be asked to hold applause until the very end.

“I love the idea of sacred movement and sacred spaces … the silence lets it mean something different for everyone,” said Bachofner.

“It’s so cool, the layering of the different disciplines that reflect what’s going on in the world. It’s a collage,” said Proudman, who in fact has show of collages on view at Zoot Coffee in Camden.

“Although I’ve read with music, this is the first time I’ve had dance. The voice, music and dance work together so well,” said Bachofner.

Both women said they got goosebumps the first time they got together and tried combining their separate contributions. The session got them both excited about presenting at the festival.

“It was a nice surprise for both of us,” said Bachofner.

At the conclusion of Bachofner and Proudman’s presentation, the Gallery Walk audience will move across the street to the city’s library for the next Poetry and Art Gallery Walk stop. Teams presenting will be poet Dawn Potter with photographer Thomas Birtwistle; poet Bruce Pratt with painter Alison Rector; and poet Jacob Fricke with found-objects artist Daniel Anselmi.

At 3:45 p.m., the walk will land at Roots & Tendrils, 2 Cross St., for presentations by poet Henry Braun with artist Robert Shetterly; poet Kristen Lindquist with sculptor Beth Henderson; and poet/visual artist Mihku Paul. At 5 p.m., the festival moves to Waterfall Arts Belfast, 256 High St., for a presentation by poet Linda Buckmaster with painter Harold Garde; poet Leonore Hildebrandt with glass artist David Jacobson; and poet Jeffrey Thomson with metal artist Isabelle Pelissier.

A closing reception will follow at 6:30 p.m., capped by the popular round robin open mic reading. This will begin with a reading by Luise van Keuren of Clark Island of her poem “Jetsam,” winner of the second annual Maine Postmark Poetry Contest, judged by Arielle Greenberg. Justine Denny of Portland, whose “Registry of Memories” was the contest’s runner-up, also is invited to read, as are a roster of other poets.

For more information, including artist/poet biographies and a complete schedule, visit belfastpoetry.org.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.