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FEATURED POETS - 2006-2008

Jennifer Sweeney, Jane Hirshfield, David St. John and Katherine Hastings



David St. John is the author of many books of poetry, including the National Book Award Finalist The Red Leaves of Night. He is also the author of a novella in verse, The Face, and Where Angels Come Towards Us - Selected Essays.

Jane Hirshfield's sixth collection of poems, After: Poems, will be released in 2006. Her other books of poetry include Given Sugar, Given Salt which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, The Lives of the Heart, The October Palace, Of Gravity & Angels, and Alaya. She is also the author of Nine Gates: Entering the Mind of Poetry.




Arthur Dawson, Jack Foley, Katherine Hastings, Richard Silberg and Adelle Foley



Richard Silberg is the author of many books of poetry, including his new book Deconstruction of the Blues. His other books include Doubleness, Totem Pole, The Fields, and Translucent Gears. He is the associate editor of Poetry Flash, the Bay Area poetry magazine for which he has written reviews since the late seventies and hosts the poetry reading series by the same name at Cody's on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley.

Jack Foley is a widely published poet and critic who, with his wife, Adelle, performs his work frequently in the San Francisco Bay Area. His books include Letters/Lights -- Words for Adelle, Gershwin, Exiles and Adrift (nominated for a BABRA award). His Greatest Hits 1974 - 2003 (2004) appeared from Pudding House Press, a by-invitation only series. His critical books include the companion volumes, O, Powerful Western Star (winner of the Artists Embassy Literary/Cultural Award 1998 -- 2000) and Foley's Books: California Rebels, Beats, and Radicals. His radio show, Cover to Cover, is heard every Wednesday at 3:00 on Berkeley station KPFA; his column, "Foley's Books," appears in the Gazebo section of the online magazine, The Alsop Review.




Ilya Kaminsky, Katherine Hastings, Paul Hoover
and Chad Sweeney



Paul Hoover is the author of Poems in Spanish (Omnidawn, 2005), Fables of Repreentation: Essays, Winter, Rehearsal in Black, Totem and Shadow: New & Selected Poems, and Viridian. His work has also been published in the anthologies Wadsworth Anthology of Poetry and Postmodern American Poetry. A new book of poems, Edge and Fold, will be released by Apogee Press in 2006.

Ilya Kaminsky was born in Odessa, former Soviet uNion in 1977, and arrived to the United States in 1993 when his family was granted asylum. Kaminsky is the author of Dancing in Odessa (Tupelo Press, 2004) which won the Whiting Writer's Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters' Metcalf Award, the Dorset Prize and the Ruth Lilly Fellowship. Dancing in Odessa was also named Best Poetry Book of the Year 2004 by ForeWord Magazine.




Molly Fisk, Aaron Shurin, Katherine Hastings and Kathleen Winter



Molly Fisk is the author of Listening to Winter, Terrain (with Dan Bellm and Forrest Hamer), and the letterpress chapbook Salt Water Poems. She has received fellowships in poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts, the California Arts Council, and the Marin Arts Council. She has won the Robinson Jeffers Tor House prize in Poetry, the Billee Murray Denny Prize, and the National Writer's Union, Santa Cruz/Local 7 Prize.

Aaron Shurin's books include Involuntary Lyrics, A Door, The Paradise of Forms: Selected Poems, Unbound: A Book of AIDS, Into the Distances, and A's Dream.




Terry Ehret, Stephen Kessler, Katherine Hastings
and Katharine Clark-Sayles



Terry Ehret has published three collections of poetry: Suspensions, Lost Body, and Translations from the Human Language. Literary awards include the National Poetry Series, California Book Award, Pabo Neruda Poetry Prize, and three Pushcart monimations. She is the co-founder of Sixteen Rivers Press, a shared-work publishing collective for San Francisco Bay Area poets. From 2004-2006 she served as poet laureate of Sonoma County where she teaches writing and lives with her husband and daughters.

Stephen Kessler is the author of Written in Water: The Collecteed Prose Poems of Luis Cernuda, The Geography of Home, Tell It to the Rabbis, and After Modigliani. His poems have also been included in The California Legacy Anthology of Poetry from the Gold Rush to the Present. He is the translator of Save Twilight, Selected Poems by Julio Cortazar.




Sharon Olson, Katherine Hastings and Murray Silverstein



Murray Silverstein is the author of Any Old Wolf from Sixteen Rivers Press. He is coauthor of four books about architecture, including A Pattern Language and Patterns of Home. His poems have appeared in Fourteen Hills, Connecticu Review, ZYZZYVA, and other literary journals. A partne rin the firm of JSW/D Architects, Silverstein lives in Oakland, California. Any Old Wolf is his first collection of poems.

Sharon Olson will be reading from her first book of poems, The Long Night of Flying, published by Sixteen Rivers Press. Her chapbook Clouds Brushed in Later was selected by Carolyn Forche as the winner of the Abby Niebauer Memorial Chapbook Award and was published by the San Jose Poetry Center Press. She lives in Palo Alto, California.





David Meltzer, Kathering Hastings and
Diane di Prima





Diane di Prima is the author of 35 books of poetry and prose, including an expanded edition of her ground-breaking work Loba, and Recollections of My Life as a Woman. Her poetry has been translated into at least twenty languages and resulted in the Award for Lifetime Achievement in Poetry from the National Poetry Association.

David Meltzer is the author of many books, including David's Copy, released by Penguin in 2005, Beat Thing, San Francisco Beat: Talking With the Poets (City Lights 2001), The Name: Selected Poetry and others.




Nancy Dougherty, Geri Digiorno, Katherine Hastings and Dorianne Laux



Geri Digiorno is the author of White Lipstick, poems published in 2005. The current Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, her publishing credits also include Paterson Literary Review, Carbuncle, 33 Poetry Review, and others. Digiorno is founder and director of The Petaluma Poetry Walk, an annual literary event that will celebrate its 11th anniversary in September of this year.

Dorrianne Laux is the author of four collections of poetry: Facts About the Moon, Smoke, What We Carry, and Awake. She is the co-author, along with Kim Addonizio, of The Poet's Companion: A Guide to the Pleasures of Writing Poetry. Laux is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize, an Editor's Choice III Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship and two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts.





Devreaux Baker, Sharon Doubiage, Katherine Hastings and Neeli Cherkovski


Neeli Cherkovski is a longtime contributor to the West Coast literary scene. Emerging from the Los Angeles underground of the Sixties, Cherkovski has surfaced as an applauded poet, critic and literary biographer. He has written nine books of poetry, including Leaning Against Time, Elegy for Bob Kaufman, and Animal; two acclaimed biographies, Bukowski: A Life and Ferlinghetti: A Biography. His book Whitman's Wild Children has become an underground classic.

Sharon Doubiago is the author of two dozen books, most notably the epic poem Hard Country and the booklength poem South America Mi Hija which was nominated twice for the National Book Award, and the collection of poems, Body and Soul. She holds three Pushcart Prizes for poetry and fiction and the Hazel Hall Oregon Book Award for Psyche Drives the Coast, a collection of poems.





Gardner Britt, Mark Irwin, Katherine Hastings and Kathleen Lynch



Kathleen Lynch's Hinge, released in February 2006 won the Black Zinnias National Poetry Award. She is the author of several chapbooks, including KATHLEEN LYNCH -- GREATEST HITS (Pudding House Publications gold invitational series). She is the recipient of the Spoon River Poetry Review Editor's Choice Award, the Salt Hill Poetry Award, and the Two Rivers Review Prize.

Mark Irwin is the author of Bright Hunger, The Halo of Desire, Against the Meanwhile, and White City. He is the recipient of three Pushcart Prizes, National Endowment for the Arts and Ohio Art Council Fellowships, the James Wright Poetry Award and fellowships from the Fulbright, Lilly, and Wurlitzer Foundations.




Ralph Angel, Katherine Hastings, Gillian Conoley and Todd Melicker




Gillian Conoley's books include Profane Halo, Lovers in the Used World, Beckon, Tall Stranger (nominated for the National Book Critics' Circle Award) , and Some Gangster Pain. Winner of several Pushcart Prizes, the Jerome J. Shestack Award in Poetry, and included in Best American Poetry, she is Poet-in-Residence and professor at Sonoma State University, where she is the founder and editor of Volt.

Ralph Angel is the author of four books of poetry: Anxious Latitudes, Neither World, which received the James Laughlin Award of The Academy of American Poets; Twice Removed; and Exceptions and Melancholies: Poems 1986 - 2006; as well as a translation of Federico García Lorca's Poem of the Deep Song. The recipient of many awards, Mr. Angel is Edith R. White Distinguished Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Redlands, and a member of the MFA Program in Writing faculty at Vermont College. He lives in Los Angeles.




Jane Mead, Brian Teare, Katherine Hastings and Edward Coletti



Jane Mead is the author of two books of poetry, The House of Poured-Out Waters: Poems, and The Lord and the General Din of the World, which was awarded a Completion Grant from the Lannan Foundation. She has also published a long poem, A Truck Marked Flammable, as a chapbook. She lives in Napa.

Brian Teare's first book, The Room Where I Was Born, won the 2003 Brittingham Prize, the 2004 Triangle Award for Gay Poetry and was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. He is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, as well as the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and MacDowell.




Michael McClure , Katherine Hastings and Michael Rothenberg



Michael McClure is famous for his dynamic poetry performances. Author of Rain Mirror, Touching the Edge: Dharma Devotions from the Hummingbird Sangha, and Huge Dreams, a reprinting of Star and The New Book/A Book of Torture, McClure has given hundreds of readings from the legendary Six Gallery in San Francisco to the Library of Congress. Recently, McClure joined with composer Terry Riley to create a CD titled I Like Your Eyes Liberty, a stunning exploration of music and voice. A musician and playwright , as well as a poet -- McClure's songs include "Mercedes Benz" popularized by Janis Joplin -- McClure has received numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Obie Award for Best Play, an NEA grant and a Rockefeller grant for playwriting.

Michael Rothenberg's books include The Paris Journals, Monk Daddy and Unhurried Vision. He is editor and publisher of Big Bridge (www.bigbridge.org), the editor of Overtime, Selected Poems by Philip Whalen, As Ever, Selected Poems by Joanne Kyger, and Davd's Copy, Selected Poems by David Meltzer.




Al Young, Katherine Hastings and Jennifer Sweeney



Al Young – California Poet Laureate Al Young is celebrating the release of his new book of poems, Coastal Nights and Inland Afternoons.  The recipient of a Wallace Stegner Writing Fellowship, the Joseph Henry Jackson Award for Poetry, a Guggenheim Fellowship and many other honors, Mr. Young's poetry has been translated into over ten languages.  He is also the author of novels, memoirs and film scripts written for Sidney Poitier, Bill Cosby and Richard Pryor.  He travels internationally and extensively, reading, lecturing and often performing with musicians. 


Jennifer Kochanek Sweeney won the 2006 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award for her book, Salt Memory. Published in numerous journals, Sweeney was a finalist for the 2005 Brittingham/Felix Pollak Prizes and the 2004 New York Center for the Book Arts chapbook competition. She was the first "emerging poet" to read for the WordTemple Poetry Series. Come celebrate her first published book of poems!




Tennessee Reed, Richard Denner, Katherine Hastings and Ishmael Reed



Ishmael Reed – The author of six books of poetry, one opera libretto in verse, six plays, four books of essays, and nine novels, Mr. Reed will be reading from his new book New and Collected Poems 1964 – 2006.  His poetry collaborations with musicians have resulted in three CD collections recently reissued by Rounder Records, and the forthcoming Conjure III from Blue Note.  Reed has been a Pulitzer Prize nominee in poetry and a National Book Award finalist in both poetry and fiction.  He will be reading with his daughter, Tennessee Reed.


Tennessee Reed compiled her writing from 1998 to 2006 in "City Beautiful," her fourth published poetry collection. Among her experiences living a poet's life since the age of five were 1994 poetry workshops and readings in Berlin and Bonn, Germany, where she was youngest person ever presented by the United States Information Agency's Arts America Program. This two-part volume features a series of poems inspired by animals, "Animals & Others," originally part of her 2005 Master of Fine Art's thesis project at Mills College.



Katherine Hastings and Billy Collins





Copperfield's Readers Series and the WordTemple Poetry Series at Copperfield's Books are pleased to present former Poet Laureate of the United States, Billy Collins.  Collins' publications include The Trouble with Poetry; Nine Horses; Sailing Alone Around the Room: New and Selected Poems; Picnic, Lightning; The Art of Drowning, and Questions About Angels.  He is also the editor of Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry. Mr. Collins will be introduced by Katherine Hastings.




Hannah Stein, Lynn Trombetta, Katherine Hastings and Bill Vartnaw



Opening poet: Bill Vartnaw

Hannah Stein's poetry collection, Earthlight, is the first volume in the La Questa Press Poetry Series. She has two chapbooks, Schools of Flying Fish, and Greatest Hits, 1981 - 2004, an invitational series from Pudding House Press. Her poems have appeared in many journals, as well as the on-line publications PoetryMagazine.com, Poetry Daily, and Verse Daily .


Lynn Trombetta, a third-generation Sonoma County native, is the author of Falling World, published by Sixteen Rivers Press. Her honors include the D. L. Emblen Award from Santa Rosa Junior College, an award from the journal Americas Review, and three Pushcart Prize nominations.




Katherine Hastings, Kay Ryan, Julie Reid and Deborah Garrison



Kay Ryan is the author of six books of poetry, including The Niagara River, winner of The Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, Say Uncle, Elephant Rocks, and Flamingo Watching. She has received awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Ingram Merrill Foundations. Ryan lives in Fairfax, California.


Deborah Garrison is the author of a new book,The Second Child -- Poems, and A Working Girl Can't Win. She worked on the editorial staff of The New Yorker for fifteen years and is now the poetry editor of Alfred A. Knopf and a senior editor at Pantheon Books. Garrison's new book of poems express the extraordinariness of everyday motherhood and family life. The shadow of individual and societal catastrophes plays throughout the book, but the exhilaration of a life fully lived triumphs here. She lives with her husband and three children in Montclair, New Jersey.




Robert Sward, Gail Larrick, Ellen Bass and Katherine Hastings



Robert Sward is the author of God Is In the Cracks -- a Narrative in Voices and 30 other books, including Four Incarnations, Heavenly Sex, The Collected Poems and The Toronto Islands. Sward has taught at Cornell University, the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and UC Santa Cruz. He was chosen by Lucille Clifton to receive a Villa Montalvo Literary Arts Award.


Ellen Bass is the author of several volumes of poetry, including Mules of Love: Poems. She was awarded the Elliston Book Award for Poetry from the University of Cincinnati and won the Nimrod/Hardman's Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. Bass is also co-author, with Laura Davis, of the best-selling "The Courage to Heal: A guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse, which has sold more than one million copies.




David Bromige Tribute



David Bromige is the author of nearly forty volumes of poetry, fiction and song, published since 1965. He is a professor emeritus at Sonoma State University, having taught there since 1970. David Bromige has a genius for variety. He has published thirty books, each one so different from the others as to seem to be the work of a different author. Bromige is often associated with the language poets, but this connection is based mainly on his close friendships with some of those poets.


Richard Denner lives near Sebastopol, California, where he is a caregiver to his elderly mother. In the 60s, he was associated with the Berkeley street poets and later with the poets of the Pacific Northwest. For twenty years he was the proprietor of Fourwinds Bookstore and Café in Ellensburg, Washington. He is an ordained Vajrayana Buddhist monk, and his Collected Poems:1961-2000 was published by Comrades Press. The vast expanse of his work can be viewed at www.dpress.net.




Robert Hass, Katherine Hastings and Brenda Hillman



Robert Hass - Poet Laureate of the United States from 1995 to 1997, Hass' books of poetry include Sun Under Wood: New Poems, Human Wishes, Praise and Field Guide which was selected by Stanley Kunitz for the Yale Younger Poets Series. Hass has also co-translated several volumes of poetry with Czeslaw Milosz and is the author or editor of several collections of essays and translation, including The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho, Buson, and Issa.


Brenda Hillman has published seven collections of poetry including White Dress (1985), Fortress (1989), Death Tractates (1992), Bright Existence (1993), Loose Sugar (1997), Cascadia (2001), and Pieces of Air in the Epic (2005), all from Wesleyan University Press. She has edited an edition of Emily Dickinson’s poetry for Shambhala Publications, and, with Patricia Dienstfrey, co-edited The Grand Permission: New Writings on Poetics and Motherhood (2003). Among the awards Hillman has received are the 2005 William Carlos Williams Prize for poetry, and Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation. Hillman serves on the faculty of Saint Mary's College in Moraga, California, where she teaches in the undergraduate and graduate programs, and she is also a member of the permanent faculties of Napa Valley Writers’ Conference and of Squaw Valley Community of Writers. For more information, visit www.blueflowerarts.com.




Katherine Hastings, Jack Foley, Adelle Foley, Linda Martel

Jacqueline Kudler



JACK FOLEY (reading from ALL - A James Broughton Reader) and JACQUELINE KUDLER

Jack Foley, poet, critic and radio host, will be reading with his wife, Adelle, from the new book he edited, All: A James Broughton Reader, published by White Crane Press. Poet, playwright and film maker, Broughton (1913—1999) continuously challenged the perceived boundaries of self and other, male and female. Foley's Reader is a work of monumental importance in bringing to the forefront the importance of Broughton as a California writer, as an American writer. If you are already familiar with Broughton's work, you won't want to miss this event. If you are not familiar with Broughton, you must not miss this event.




Jacqueline Kudler's first full length poetry collection is Sacred Precinct, published by Sixteen Rivers Press. She is the recipient of the Marin Arts Council Board Award for "an exceptional body of work over a period of time" and serves as an advisory director on the board of Marin Poetry Center.




Helen Wickes, Paula Koneazny, Nina Lindsay and Katherine Hastings



Helen Wickes is the author of In Search of Landscape, her first book of poems. Wickes lives in Oakland, California, where for many years she worked as a psychotherapist. She has a Ph.D. in psychology and an M.F.A. from the Bennington Writing Seminars, where she was the recipient of the Jane Kenyon scholarship. Her poems have appeared in ZYZZYVA, Runes, Santa Clara Review, 5 a.m., Pleiades, and Cloud View Poets, among other publications. Ed Ochester, author of The Land of Cockaigne, says “Helen Wickes’s poems are civilized pleasures, characterized by exact observation and metaphor, sly humor, and surprises on nearly every page. And who among her contemporaries has written a better soliloquy than Wickes’s ‘Grendel’s Brother,’ a witty fantasy that’s worthy of Browning?"

Nina Lindsay was born and raised in Oakland, California, and lives and works there today as a librarian at the Children's Room of the Oakland Public Library. She has published poems in many journals, including Shenandoah, Green Mountains Review, Northwest Review, RATTLE, POOL, and Gastronomica. Today's Special Dish is her first book of poetry.




Francisco Alarcón, Gwynn O'Gara, Francisco Aragón and Katherine Hastings


Francisco Alarcón and Francisco Aragón

Francisco Alarcón, Chicano poet and educator, is the author of ten volumes of poetry, including, From the Other Side of Night / Del otro lado de la noche: New and Selected Poems (University of Arizona Press 2002), Sonetos a la locura y otras penas / Sonnets to Madness and Other Misfortunes (Creative Arts Book Company 2001), No Golden Gate for Us (Pennywhistle Press 1993), Snake Poems: An Aztec Invocation(Chronicle Books 1992), De amor oscuro / Of Dark Love (Moving Parts Press 1991, and 2001), Body in Flames / Cuerpo en llamas (Chronicle Books l990). His most recent book of bilingual poetry for children titled, Poems to Dream Together / Poemas para soñar juntos, was published by Lee & Low Books, New York in Spring 2005, and was awarded the 2006 Jane Addams Honor Book Award. Francisco has been a recipient of the Danforth and Fulbright fellowships, and has been awarded several literary prizes, including the 1998 Carlos Pellicer-Robert Frost Poetry Honor Award by the Third Binational Border Poetry Contest, Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, 1993 American Book Award, the 1993 Pen Oakland Josephine Miles Award, and the 1984 Chicano Literary Prize.  In April 2002 he received the Fred Cody Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bay Area Book Reviewers Association (BABRA) in San Francisco. He was one of the three finalists nominated for the state poet laureate of California last year.

Francisco Aragón - A native of San Francisco and long-time resident of Spain, Francisco Aragón is the author of, Puerta del Sol (Bilingual Press) and editor of the anthology, The Wind Shifts: New Latino Poetry (University of Arizona Press). In the area of literary translation (from the Spanish), he has published a number of poetry books, including three by Francisco X. Alarcón: Body in Flames, (Chronicle Books), Of Dark Love (Moving Parts Press) and Sonnets to Madness and other Misfortunes (Creative Arts Book Company). Aragón will be a writer-in-residence at the Anderson Center for Interdiscplinary Studies in Red Wing Minnesota during the month of September 2007. He has lived in northern Indiana since 2001.



Carolyn Kizer and Katherine Hastings


Katherine Hastings and Eloise Klein Healy


Carolyn Kizer and Eloise Klein Healy

Carolyn Kizer received the Pulitzer Prize in poetry for her collection of poems, Yin, in 1984, and the 1988 Theodore Roethke Award. She was a fellow of the Chinese Government in Comparative Literature at Columbia University and was the first director of the Literature Program at the National Endowment for the Arts, a member of the board of the Academy of American Poets, and has been a poet-in-residence at Columbia, Stanford and Princeton, among others. Her book, Cool, Calm & Collected -- Poems 1960 - 2000 was published by Copper Canyon Press.


Eloise Klein Healy is the author of six books of poetry and three spoken word recordings. She was the founding chair of the MFA in Creative Writing Program at Antioch University Los Angeles where she is Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing Emerita. Healy directed the Women’s Studies Program at California State University Northridge and taught in the Feminist Studio Workshop at The Woman’s Building in Los Angeles. She is Resident Poet at the Idyllwild Summer Poetry Festival, the co-founder of ECO-ARTS, an eco-tourism/arts venture, and founding editor of ARKTOI BOOKS, an imprint of Red Hen Press. Her latest collection of poems is The Islands Project: Poems For Sappho.






D.A. Powell, Carol Ciavonne, Sam Witt, Katherine Hastings and Jane Mead


D.A. Powell and Sam Witt

D.A. Powell's most recent collection, Cocktails (Graywolf, 2004) was a finalist for the Lambda Book Award, the PEN West Award, the Publisher's Triangle Award and the National Book Critics' Circle Award. Recent poems have appeared in Poetry, Alaska Quarterly Review, Pleaides, Smartish Pace and Colorado Review. He received Sonoma State University's Distinguished Alumnist Award and teaches at University of San Francisco.


Sam Witt's first book of poetry, Everlasting Quail, won the Katherine Nason Bakeless First Book Prize in 2000, sponsored by Breadloaf.  Everlasting Quail was published by UPNE the following year, and he received a Fulbright Fellowship to live and write in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Witt has participated in poetry festivals at Druskininkai and Vilnius at the invitation of the Lithuanian government; he has been a resident at the Breadloaf Writers' Conference and at Yaddo; his poems have been published in Virginia Quarterly, Harvard Review, Georgia Review, Denver Quarterly, among other journals. His second book, Sunflower Brother, won the Cleveland State University Press Open Book competition for 2006; it is available from Cleveland State University Press. Witt will be teaching at Whitman College for the 2007-2008 academic year.




Lynn Knight, Forrest Hamer, Katherine Hastings and Greg Mahrer


Lynne Knight and Forrest Hamer

Opening poet: Greg Mahrer, whose work as appeared in many journals including The New England Review and Crazyhorse.

Lynn Knight is the author of three full-length collections, Dissolving Borders, which won a Quarterly Review of Literature prize in 1996; The Book of Common Betrayals, which won the Dorothy Brunsman Award from Bear Star Press in 2002; and Night in the Shape of a Mirror, published by David Robert Books in 2006. She has also published three prize-winning chapbooks, Deer in Berkeley (Sow’s Ear Press), Life as Weather (Two Rivers Review), and Defying the Flat Surface (The Ledge Press). A cycle of poems on Impressionist winter paintings, Snow Effects, appeared from Small Poetry Press as part of its Select Poets Series and is being translated into French by Nicole Courtet. She lives in Berkeley, California. More of her work can be seen at www.lynneknight.com.

Forrest Hamer is the author of Call & Response (Alice James, 1995), winner of the Beatrice Hawley Award; Middle Ear (Roundhouse, 2000), winner of the Northern California Book Award; and Rift (Four Way Books, 2007). His work is widely anthologized, and appears in three editions of The Best American Poetry. He has received fellowships from the California Arts Council and the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, and he has taught on the poetry faculty of the Callaloo Creative Writing Workshops.




Colleen McElroy, Katherine Hastings, Shannon DeJong and Armando Garcia Davila


Colleen McElroy and Jimmy Santiago Baca

Colleen J. McElroy – poet, prose writer and folklorist – is the author of nine collections of poetry, including Travelling Music; What Madness Brought Me Here: New and Selected Poems, Bone Flames and her newly released collection Sleeping With the Moon. McElroy is Editor-in-Chief of the literary magazine The Seattle Review. She has lectured on poetry and American literature throughout the world, and her research into poetry and oral tradition has taken her to Europe, Central and South America, Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands, Africa, Japan, Australia, China, Tibet, and Jordan. Her work has been translated into ten languages, including Russian and Italian. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

Jimmy Santiago Baca – poet, novelist, and author of the award winning memoir, A Place To Stand, will be reading from his new collection of poems, Spring Along the Rio Grande (New Directions, 2007). Born in New Mexico of Indio-Mexican descent, Jimmy Santiago Baca was raised first by his grandmother and later sent to an orphanage. A runaway at age 13, it was after Baca was sentenced to five years in a maximum security prison that he began to turn his life around: he learned to read and write and unearthed a voracious passion for poetry. During a fateful conflict with another inmate, Jimmy was shaken by the voices of Neruda and Lorca, and made a choice that would alter his destiny. Instead of becoming a hardened criminal, he emerged from prison a writer. Baca has devoted his post-prison life to writing and teaching others who are overcoming hardship. His themes include American Southwest barrios, addiction, injustice, education, community, love and beyond. He has conducted hundreds of writing workshops in prisons, community centers, libraries, and universities throughout the country. In 2005 he created Cedar Tree Inc., a nonprofit foundation that works to give people of all walks of life the opportunity to become educated and improve their lives. He is the recipient of over a dozen awards.




Al Young, Reginald Lockett, Katherine Hastings, Brian Auerbach, Beatriz Lagos, q.r. hand, jr., and Lewis Jordan


Al Young and The WordWind Chorus

Al Young – California's Poet Laureate, has sung and played the blues, drawn inspiration from the blues, and has incorporated the blues and blues stylings into his poetry. Come celebrate the release of his new book Something About the Blues -- An Unlikely Collection of Poetry. The book comes with a CD containing over 60 minutes of dynamic blues poetry, often with a live band, and a recording of Langston Hughes reading "The Weary Blues." 

WordWind Chorus is an ensemble of performing writers. q.r. hand, jr., a native New Yorker, is the author of i speak to the poet in man, and his work has appeared in many journals as well as two seminal anthologies, Black Fire and Outlaw Poets. Brian Auerbach hails from Atlanta, by way of Philadelphia, and has written about jazz for several publications. He is the author of ear to the heart. Saxophonist, poet and playwright Lewis Jordan, from Chicago, has performed as a member of United Front and with bassist Mark Izu in a duet format. His recording (with Izu) is Travels of a Zen Baptist.  He's the author of the acclaimed play And Time Will Take You Out. A mainstay of the Black Arts Movement in the Bay Area, Reginald Lockett’s work has appeared in over 30 anthologies and periodicals. He has authored three books of poetry.  Working together in words and music, wordWind chorus plays an urban based world poetry sound reaching from the personal to the cosmos, from around the corner to around the world. Whether talking about love or history or just hangin’ out, the sound vibrates out of the streets, nightclubs and communities sometimes in struggle. These sounds mean, and mean to mean.




Donna Emerson, Terry Ehret, Gillian Wegener and Katherine Hastings


Terry Ehret and Gillian Wegener

Terry Ehret is one of the founders of Sixteen Rivers Press. Literary awards for her previous collections, Lost Body and Translations from the Human Language, include the National Poetry Series, the Commonwealth Club of California Book Award, and the Nimrod/ Hardman Pablo Neruda Poetry Prize. From 2004-2006, she served as Sonoma County Poet Laureate. She has taught writing at San Francisco State and Sonoma State Universities, California College of the Arts, Santa Rosa Junior College, and with the California Poets in the Schools Program. She currently leads private workshops in Sonoma County, California, where she lives with her family. Lucky Break is her third book of poem


Gillian Wegener has had poems published in numerous journals, including Runes, English Journal, americas review, and In the Grove.  A chapbook, Lifting One Foot, Lifting the Other was published by In the Grove Press in 2001, and she was awarded a top prize by the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundation for 2006. Wegener works as a junior high English teacher in California’s Central Valley. She lives with her husband and daughter in Modesto.


Ronald Thomas, Anne Carol, Katherine Hastings, Judy Grahn and Nickole Brown


Nickole Brown and Judy Grahn

Nickole Brown is the author of Sister, published by Red Hen in September 2007. She has received grants from the Kentucky Foundation for Women and the Kentucky Arts Council. She studied English Literature at Oxford University as an English Speaking Union Scholar, and was the editorial assistant for the late Hunter S. Thompson. Her work has been featured in The Writer's Chronicle, Poets & Writers, 32 Poems, The Cortland Review, Chautauqua Literary Journal, Diagram Magazine, Another Chicago Magazine, Mammoth Books' Sudden Stories anthology, and Starcherone Press anthology PP / FF.  She also co-edited the anthology, Air Fare: Stories, Poems, & Essays on Flight.  She has served as the National Publicity Consultant for the Palm Beach Poetry Festival and as the Program Coordinator for the Union Institute & University writing residency in Slovenia.  Nickole has worked at Louisville’s nonprofit, independent, literary press, Sarabande Books for eight years. 

Judy Grahn, author of Another Mother Tongue; The Queen of Wands; A Woman is Talking To Death; and other collections, is a lifetime activist and artist, whose work has been foundational to more than one social movement in the US and internationally, including G/L/B/T and Women’s Spirituality.  As a poet and social theorist, her work has been widely published, distributed, anthologized, staged, and put to music.  She teaches creative arts and women’s spirituality, and is Research Faculty for Institute of Transpersonal Psychology.  Spring of 2008 Red Hen Press intends to publish love belongs to those who do the feeling, a collection of her short poems, some of which she performs with singer/songwriter Anne Carol. A CD is in recording stage. Also, Judy edits and publishes her own essays in Metaformia: A Journal of Menstruation and Culture (Metaformia.org).


Armando Garcia Davila, Katherine Hastings, Rose Black and Joseph Zaccardi


Rose Black and Joseph Zaccardi

Rose Black, the author of Clearing, has a passion for the prose poem, a form which works well for her and seems to illuminate her voice. Poet Moira Magneson describes Black's poems as a canoe ride on a quiet lake, interrupted by a sudden, sometimes deadly, squall. David St. John calls Black “a remarkable and heart-breaking poet.” Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Runes, South Carolina Review, Hampden-Sydney Poetry Review, Spillway and Slant.

Fairfax poet, Joseph Zaccardi, reads from his collection Vents, a book Margaret Kaufman says "floats like a 'flotilla of dragonflies' over the hard situations of life." Zaccardi's poems have been published in many journals including Runes and Seattle Review. He is the recipient of an Individual Artist Grant from the Marin Arts Council.




Katherine Hastings, Frank Reeve, Susan Kelly-DeWitt and Albert Flynn DeSilver


Susan Kelly-DeWitt and Albert Flynn DeSilver

Susan Kelly-DeWitt is the author of THE FORTUNATE ISLANDS (Marick Press 207). Other works include the chapbooks A CAMELLIA FOR JUDY FEATHER’S HAND, TO A SMALL MOTH, Susan Kelly-DeWitt’s GREATEST HITS, THE LAND and a letterpress collection, THE BOOK OF INSECTS. Her new chapbook, CASSIOPEIA ABOVE THE BANYAN TREE appears online as Mudlark 33 and was released in an expanded print version from Rattlesnake Press in 2007. Over the years she has worked as a freelance writer and poetry columnist for the Sacramento Bee and Sacramento Union, as the editor of the on-line journal Perihelion and the print journal Quercus; she has been a California Poet-in-the-Schools, the program director of an arts program for homeless women, an educator, and an artist in the prisons. She lives in Sacramento, California, where she is an editor of Swan Scythe Press, an exhibiting visual artist and an instructor the University of California, Davis Extension. She recently completed her second collection of poems, GHOSTFIRE.

Albert Flynn DeSilver is the author, most recently of Letters to Early Street, Summer 2007 from La Alameda/University of New Mexico Press, and Walking Tooth & Cloud from French Connection Press in Paris, January 2007. He has published more than one hundred poems in literary journals worldwide including Zyzzyva, New American Writing, Jacket (Australia), Poetry Kanto (Japan), Van Gogh’s Ear (France), Hanging Loose, Exquisite Corpse, and many others. He is also the editor and publisher of The Owl Press, publishing innovative poetry and poetic collaboration. He is now the CEO/Director of Visiting Angels, a Senior Homecare agency in Santa Rosa, California.




Julia Levine, Lee Slonimsky, Katherine Hastings, and Penelope La Montagne


Lee Slonimsky and Julia Levine

Opening poet: Penelope La Montagne is poet laureate emeritus of Healdsburg, CA and author of River Shoes by Running Wolf Press.

Lee Slonimsky's books are TALK BETWEEN LEAF AND SKIN (2002), PYTHAGORAS IN LOVE (2007), and the forthcoming LOGICIAN OF THE WIND (2011). He is a socially conscious hedge fund manager whose work with numbers led him to the meter and rhythm of his Pythagorean sonnets. Pythagoras's biography (he was the leader of an Animal Rights party in Magna Graecia 2500 years ago) has led Lee to become a public proponent of the same cause, including an address to the 2008 National Animal Rights Conference in Virginia. Of his first book, the poet Vivien Shipley wrote, "the poems glow, shift and blaze in turn as they yield a vision of history, of the universe that surges with a passion for being, for a life lived fully." Of the PYTHAGORAS IN LOVE, poet X. J. Kennedy has written, "his work strikes me as unique in current American poetry."

Julia Levine has received numerous awards and grants in poetry, including the Anhinga Prize for Poetry and a bronze medal from Foreword magazine for her first book, Practicing for Heaven, the Tampa Review Prize in Poetry, for her second collection, Ask, the Discovery/the Nation Award for Emerging New writers, and the Pablo Neruda Prize in poetry. Her most recent book, Ditch-tender, was released this past winter from University of Tampa press. She received her Ph.D. from University of California at Berkeley, and currently lives and works in Davis.




Sarah Maclay, Jessica Fisher, Mike Tuggle and Katherine Hastings


Mike Tuggle, Sarah Maclay and Jessica Fisher

Mike Tuggle, Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, reads from his collection Absolute Elsewhere (Philos Press) and other poems.  Tuggle is the host of the Snake River Poetry Series in Duncans Mills and the winner of several prizes, including The Oberon Prize and a Sonoma Community Foundation Grant.

Sarah Maclay is the author of The White Bride (University of Tampa Press, 2008) and Whore (Tampa Review Prize for Poetry), as well as three limited edition chapbooks: Shadow of Light (Inevitable Press), Ice from the Belly (Far Star Fire) and Weeding the Duchess (Black Stone Press). Her poems, essays and reviews have appeared in APR, FIELD, Ploughshares, The Writers' Chronicle, Ninth Letter, Pool, Swink, The Laurel Review, The Journal, lyric, Hotel Amerika, ZYZZYVA, Solo, The Los Angeles Review, Washington Square, Gulf Coast, Hunger Mountain and numerous other spots including Poetry International, where she serves as book review editor.

Jessica Fisher's first book, Frail-Craft, won the 2006 Yale Younger Poets Prize and was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. Together with Robert Hass, she edited The Addison Street Anthology (Heyday Books, 2004). Her poems and translations appear or are forthcoming in such journals as The Believer, The Colorado Review, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The ThreePenny Review, and TriQuarterly. She lives in Oakland with her husband and daughter, and is currently completing a PhD in English at UC Berkeley.




L-to-R: Gail Kennedy, Phyllis Meshulam, Pat Nolan, David Bromige, Clark Coolidge, Terri Carrion, Bill Hawley, Michael Rothenberg, Brian Howlett, Katherine Hastings, Ed Coletti



Michael Rothenberg celebrates The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen

Michael Rothenberg, editor of The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen, celebrates the publication of the book by Wesleyan Press. Philip Whalen, was a poet and a key figure in the San Francisco Renaissance and the Beat generation. Michael McClure says "Whalen's poetry is gentle consciousness combined with the ability to be outspoken, outrageous and entertaining. He is an original founder of the Beats and an erudite poet-scholar who received Zen lineage and became a deep teacher of his companions, readers, and the future." Reading with Rothenberg tonight will be Clark Coolidge, David Bromige, Pat Nolan and others.



Elizabeth Bradfield, Katherine Hastings and August Kleinzahler


August Kleinzahler and Elizabeth Bradfield

August Kleinzahler was born in Jersey City in 1949. He is the author of ten books of poems and a memoir, Cutty, One Rock. His collection, The Strange Hours Travelers Keep, was awarded the 2004 Griffin Poetry Prize. Tonight he reads from Sleeping It Off In Rapid City -- Poems, New and Selected (Farrar Straus Giroux, 2008), a book that gathers poems from his major works along with a rich portion of new poems that visit different voice registers and experiment with form and length. "Erudite, restless, intellectually curious. alert to what goes on around him from the moment he opens his eyes in the morning, [Kleinzahler] brings to mind Frank O'Hara...Wonderful." -- Charles Simic.

Elizabeth Bradfield is the author of Interpretive Work (Arktoi Books/Red Hen Press, 2008) and editor of Broadsided (www.broadsidedpress.org), a virtual, grassroots press that harnesses the tradition of the broadside. Her poems have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, several anthologies, and are forthcoming in Ploughshares and Orion. A recent transplant from Alaska, she is currently a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. When not writing, she works as a naturalist.




Paul Hoover, Maxine Chernoff, Terri Carrion and Katherine Hastings


Opening Poet: West County poet Terri Carrion has had her poetry, fiction, non-fiction and photography published in many print magazines as well as online, including The Cream City Review, Hanging Loose, Pearl, Penumbra, and Exquisite Corpse. Her collaborative poem with Michael Rothenberg, “Cartographic Anomaly” was published in the anthology, Saints of Hysteria, A Half-Century of Collaborative American Poetry and her chapbook “Lazy Tongue” was published by D Press in the summer of 2007. Currently, she is collaborating on the translation of a Galician Anthology from Galician to Spanish to English, to appear in all three languages, in February of 2009, on BigBridge.org, for which she is assistant editor and art designer.

The Selected Poems of Friedrich Hölderlin, translated by Maxine Chernoff & Paul Hoover

"More than his famous contemporaries, Goethe and Schiller, it is Friedrich Hölderlin, the poet of incessant change and transformation, who today stands as the major poet of his age -- and whose visionary work has remained a plum line that helps us fathom the complexities… of our own age.  In their elegant and fluid translations of this excellent and exhaustive selection of poems Paul Hoover and Maxine Chernoff capture the work's extreme contemporaneity, what they themselves have called 'the drama of Hölderlin's consciousness, the beauty of his lyrics, and the largeness of his vision." -- Pierre Joris

Maxine Chernoff and Paul Hoover will present this wonderful new publication, reading their translations from the book Rosmarie Waldrop says "elucidates Hölderlin's complex vision with perfect contemporary pitch."

Following Hölderlin's work, Chernoff and Hoover will read from their own latest books of poetry:

Maxine Chernoff's The Turning (Apogee Press, 2008) turns at the moment 'when we survive our disappearances,' 'when murder chastises history,' in other words, right now -- when all that's left is the leveled playing field of the page, where graffiti scrawled on a wall is just as likely to carry import as Kristeva or Emerson or 'memory or Memorex.'" -- Gillian Conoley.  Chernoff is the author of six books of fiction and ten books of poetry.  Chair of Creative Writing at San Francisco State University, she co-edits the long-running literary journal, New American Writing.

Paul Hoover's most recent poetry collection is Edge and Fold.  His book, Poems in Spanish, was nominated for the Northern California Book Reviewers Award.  With Nguyen Do, he edited and translated the anthology, Black Dog, Black Night: Contemporary Vietnamese Poetry.  He won the 2002 Jerome J. Shestack Award for the best poems to appear in American Poetry Review that year.  Professor of Creative Writing at San Francisco State University, he edited Postmodern American Poetry (W. W. Norton, 1994).  An additional poetry volume, Sonnet 56, will be published in 2009; it consists of 56 formal versions of Shakespeare's sonnet of that number.

Mari LEsperance, David Alpaugh, Katherine Hastings and Karl Frederick


Opening Poet: Karl Frederick. Sebastopol poet Karl Frederick's poems are "often physical, yet rooted beyond the reach of time and space. Held to the light, they are infused with longing, appreciation, and mystery." A resident of Sonoma County for ten years, Frederick says he is "one of a couple dozen lost souls who wander from one open mic venue to the next, unmercifully egging each other on."

David Alpaugh and Mari L'Esperance

David Alpaugh’s most recent poetry collection is Heavy Lifting (Alehouse Press, 2007). His first collection Counterpoint won the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize from Story Line Press and his chapbooks have been published by Coracle Books and Pudding House. His essays “The Professionalization of Poetry” (serialized by Poets & Writers in 2003) and “What's Really Wrong with Poetry Book Contests?” (recently posted on the net by Rattle and by poetry.about.com) have spurred wide discussion both on-line and off. A graduate of Rutgers University and the University of California, Berkeley, he has taught at the U.C. Extension and hosts a monthly poetry reading series in Crockett.

Born in Kobe, Japan and raised in California, Guam, and Japan, Mari LEsperance's first full-length collection The Darkened Temple was awarded the 2007 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry and published by University of Nebraska Press in September 2008. She has also published an award-winning chapbook titled Begin Here (2000, Sarasota Poetry Theatre Press). L'Esperance's poems have appeared in The Beloit Poetry Journal, Many Mountains Moving, Pequod, Salamander, and elsewhere and her work has been nominated twice for a Pushcart Prize. A graduate of New York University's Creative Writing Program and a recipient of grants from the New York Times Company Foundation, Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, and Hedgebrook, LEsperance lives in Oakland, California.




Katherine Hastings, Laura Walker, Camille Dungy and Amy Trussell


Opening Poet: Amy Trussell. Sonoma County poet Trussell is the author of Poems in Ursula Minor (Meeting of the Minds Press, 2007); Meteorite Dealers (Moria Books, Chicago, 2007) and Ungulations, with A. di Michele (Surreigional Press, 2008). Her poems have been published widely, including The New Orleans Review, Poetry Flash, and other publications.

Camille Dungy and Laura Walker

Camille Dungy, author of What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison (Red Hen Press, 2006), has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Virginia Commission for the Arts, the Dana Award, and Bread Loaf. She is co-editor of From the Fishouse: An Anthology of Poems that Sing, Rhyme, Resound, Syncopate, Alliterate, and Just Plain Sound Great (Persea, April 2009), and assistant editor of Cave Canem's Gathering Ground (University of Michigan, 2006). Her second collection, Suck on the Marrow, is forthcoming. She is associate professor of Creative Writing at San Francisco State University.

Laura Walker grew up in rural North Carolina and now lives in Berkeley. She is the author of rimertown/ an atlas (UC Press, 2008) and swarm lure (Battery Press, 2004). Her work has appeared in various journals, including 26, Five Fingers Review, Xantippe and Bird Dog. She teaches creative writing at University of San Francisco, UC Berkeley Extension and San Francisco State University.




Bryan Tso Jones, Katherine Hastings, Hannah Maggiora and Bart Schneider


Opening Poet: Hannah Maggiora: Sonoma County poet Hannah Maggiora has had her work appear in several publications, including Women's Voices. Her poem "Sonnet to Topaz, Utah" won first place in Asian American Curriculum Project, Inc. Maggiora received her MFA in Writing from USF and works at Santa Rosa Junior College in the Communication Studies Department.

Bart Schneider and Bryan Tso Jones

Bart Schneider is the author of the novels Blue Bossa, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; Secret Love, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, Beautiful Inez, and The Man in the Blizzard. a literary mystery that features Private Eye Augie Boyer and Detective Bobby Sanatini, a man with a "photographic memory for poetry." Schneider grew up in San Francisco and spent the last twenty-five years living in Minnesota. In 1986, he founded the national book and culture magazine, the Hungry Mind Review, which he edited for fifteen years. In 2001, he became the literary director of the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, where he founded Speakeasy Magazine. He now lives in Sonoma.

Bryan Tso Jones is the author of Raking the Hollow Bones, which won the 2007 Rhea and Seymour Gorsline Poetry Prize and was published by Bedbug Press in 2008. It was a finalist for the Ben Reitman Award and the Wick Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared in the Connecticut Review, Crab Orchard Review, Hayden's Ferry Review, the Literary Review, and the Minnesota Review, among others. Born in Oceanside, California, Bryan grew up in Iran, the Philippines, as well as both coasts of the United States. He has traveled widely, having visited British Columbia, China, Taiwan, England, Germany, Greece, Australia, and recently Saudi Arabia. He earned an MFA in creative writing and MA in literature from California State University, Chico, and attended the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference and the Squaw Valley Community of Writers as a fellowship recipient. Bryan will attend the Vermont Studio Center as a fellowship artist in 2010. He currently lives in Chico, California.