Poet Information

John Dutton

About the Poet

John Dutton photo

Award-winning poet and author John Dutton, BA in English, BA in Elementary Education, and M. Ed. as a Reading Specialist, has taught language arts to middle school students in Prince William County, Virginia, for more years than he can remember. Seeing that the life of a teacher is filled with stacks upon stacks of papers waiting to be graded, he prefers spending his time as a classroom scribe writing alongside his students. He enjoys writing poetry and short stories because anything is possible when pencil hits paper!

Dutton is an active part of the literary community. In January 2015, John began hosting Spilled Ink VA. Spilled Ink VA is an open microphone night celebrating the written word held on the fourth Friday of the month at Jirani Coffeehouse in Old Towne, Manassas. It is open to all writers, authors, poets, or scribblers. All are welcome to read or listen.

Dutton is a member of the Prince William County Arts Council, a board member of Write by the Rails, a founding member of the Prince William County Poet Laureate Circle, and a life member of the Poetry Society of Virginia and Virginia Writers Club. He has been a Prince William County Poet Laureate nominee and was awarded the 2019 Seefeldt Award for Arts Excellence in the category of Outstanding Volunteer. The Prince William Arts Council and Poet Laureate Circle awarded him the inaugural Outstanding Poetry Project Award in 2018 for his creation of Spilled Ink VA which currently has 241 members, and the hybrid show has participants from coast to coast.

Though Dutton is known for his poetry, he considers himself a writer. Dutton has published three books: Armadillo Lost Her Pillow, Argument at the Airport, and Billy Pug’s Bad Day.



Virginia City or County Affiliation


Years of Residence in Virginia

since 1996

Current City/State of Residence

Woodbridge, Virginia





Year of Birth



Cooperation, Acceptance, Persistence, Family

Published Works or Performances

Poetry appears in various anthologies, including:

Poetry published by various groups, including:

  • Nova Bards
  • Poets Anonymous
  • Poetry Marathon
  • Spilled Ink VA
  • Virginia Writer’s Club
  • Inspiration for Writers, Inc.
  • Writing the Land
  • Mike Maggio’s 30 for 30
  • Prince William Living Magazine


  • Spilled Ink @ Jirani Coffeehouse on the fourth Friday of every month
  • Spilled Ink East @ Clearbrook Center of the Arts on the second Friday of every month
  • Arts Alive held annually by the Prince William County Arts Council
  • In the Company of Laureates held every other year by the Prince William County Arts Council

Selected Individual Poems or Performances

The following poems are available for reading:

  • I Met the Missionary at Midnight
  • Great Beyond
  • Bliss
  • Scrivener’s Paradise
  • Baseball is a Surrogate Father
  • Teaching After the Pandemic: The New Normal



John Dutton


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