Francine Leffler Ringold (Johnson) served two terms as Poet Laureate of Oklahoma and was the 2003 winner of the “Writer Who Makes a Difference Award” from The Writer Magazine. She edited and championed Nimrod International Journal and taught literature and theater at the University of Tulsa for over 47 years and invented courses such as: Sports and Literature, The Law and Literature and Writing Your Memoir. Her books of poetry include the award-winning volumes The Trouble with Voices (1995), Still Dancing (2004) and Dog Days: A Way of Speaking (2013).

A devoted teacher, Fran has not only taught at The University of Tulsa, but also in the Oklahoma State Arts in Education programs, at the Oklahoma School for the Deaf, The Tulsa Center for the Physically Challenged, and Gatesway Foundation for Persons with Developmental Disabilities. Writing and drawing exercises and examples of her students work are used in the publication co-written with artist Madeline M. Rugh Making Your Own Mark: A Drawing and Writing Guide for Senior Citizens (Coman & Associates/Council Oak Books 1989) and in The Magic Journey: Writing and Painting at Gatesway (Very Special Arts, Oklahoma 1991).
Dr. Ringold has four grown children and four grown grandchildren of whom she is justifiably proud. Still involved in innovative community-wide teaching, writing and publishing projects, Fran continues to teach as an outreach of Nimrod International Journal and in selective sessions, some in prisons, some in the park.

 “Grief is not appropriate in a household given to the Muses.  No! Lamentation does not belong here.”  Ascribed to Sappho, 7thC BC Greek lyric poet

What art offers is space — a certain breathing room for the spirit.” Poet, painter and novelist, John Updike in an interview with FR on KWGS-FM.

“Niece/daughter of a vaudeville dancer and a journalist, Fran brings to her writing a love of people, variety, words, and movement — an unabashed acknowledgment of the longings of the body and the demands of an inquisitive mind.”  Manly Johnson

“I admired and was moved by Fran’s Pete poems.  We learn a lot about how to live, and about ‘attachment’ from our animal companions.” LR Murphy


Dog Days: A Way of Speaking and other books by Francine Ringold are available on-line from, and your local independent bookstore.