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Elena Karina Byrne

Elena Karina Byrne and Gail Wronsky

9 DECEMBER 2021 — thursday

Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Elena Karina Byrne, If This Makes You Nervous, and Gail Wronsky, Under the Capsized Boat We Fly: New & Selected Poems, online via Zoom, free, 7:00 pm PST (Register to attend: please click here; you will receive an email with a link to join the reading)

Please join us for a Poetry Flash virtual reading on Thursday, December 9 at 7:00 pm PST! We are excited to bring you this compelling reading via Zoom. To register for this reading, please click on the link in the calendar listing above. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event. Thank you for continuing to support Poetry Flash and our reading series during these unprecedented times.

This reading is co-sponsored by Moe's Books in Berkeley; the featured books are available at


Elena Karina Byrne's new book is If This Makes You Nervous, a book of lyric poetry that responds to works of art. Molly Bendall says, "In this original and beguiling collection, Byrne offers us her private gallery and guides us through episodes of her life, revealing to us not only how works of art have instructed and nurtured her, but also how her life became imprinted on the art." A Pushcart Prize recipient, her previous books include No, Don't, Squander, MASQUE, and The Flammable Bird. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, Best American Poetry, The Paris Review, Kyoto Journal, Verse Daily, Poetry International, Plume, Academy of American Poets Poem-A-Day, Kenyon Review, Narrative, Volt, TriQuarterly, and BOMB. She's currently writing screenplays, short stories, and completing a collection of hybrid essays entitled "Voyeur Hour: Poetry, Art, Film, & Desire." Former Regional Director of the Poetry Society of America, Elena Karina Byrne is a freelance editor and lecturer, Programming Consultant & Stage Manager for The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, poetry programs curator for the Craft Contemporary Museum, and literary programs director for The Ruskin Art Club.

Gail Wronsky's new book is Under the Capsized Boat We Fly: New & Selected Poems David St. John says, "Gail Wronsky is an astonishing poet whose work I've turned to for more than twenty-five years to find the most deeply compassionate, artistically complex and intellectually astute poetry being written in this country. She is a literary revisionist of the most exquisite order, reconstructing the poetic canon, challenging the historical conventions of poetry and striking urgent, lyric chords of female empowerment. …With this book she takes her rightful place among the most celebrated of American poets." Her previous poetry collections include Imperfect Pastorals, Poems for Infidels, and Dying for Beauty (finalist for the Western Arts Federation Poetry Prize). She is the translator of Argentinean poet Alicia Partnoy's book Fuegos Florales/Flowering Fires, winner of the American Poetry Prize from Settlement House Press. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, Boston Review, Antioch Review, Poetry International, and Volt. Her work has appeared in anthologies, including Poets Against War, The Black Body, In Possession of Shakespeare, The Poet's Child, and Coiled Serpent: Poets Arising from the Cultural Quakes and Shifts of Los Angeles.

Daily Listings

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19 JANUARY 2022 — wednesday

  • Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center presents a reading celebrating the life and works of the fourteenth century mystic, Margery Kempe, featuring authors whose recent works speak on her legacy: poet and novelist Robert Glück, Margery Kempe, poet Daniel Tiffany, Cry Baby Mystic, and poet Pattie McCarthy, Wyfthing, moderated by scholar Julie Orelmanski, Symptomatic Subjects: Bodies, Medicine, and Causation in the Literature of Late Medieval England, free, online, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • Skylight Books presents short story writer Gwen E. Kirby, discussing her new book, Shit Cassandra Saw, a warm and fiercely funny collection of stories of women throughout history, in conversation with novelist Liv Stratman, Cheat Day, free, online, 6:30 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • San Francisco Public Library presents a reading and discussion with Dr. Rebecca Hall, Wake: The Hidden History of Women-Led Slave Revolts, as she details the search to find stories of women warriors left out of the historical record, Zoom, free, 6:00-7:00 pm PST (For more information and to register, visit:
  • Bookshop Santa Cruz presents a poetry reading and book launch for Santa Cruz Poet Laureate David Allen Sullivan, reading from his new book, Black Butterflies Over Baghdad, joined by poet Farnaz Fatemi, Sister Tongue, winner of the Wick Poetry Prize, free, online, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:

20 JANUARY 2022 — thursday

  • City Lights presents Hawa Allan in conversation with Pamela Sneed exploring Hawa Allan's new book Insurrection: Rebellion, Civil Rights, and the Paradoxical State of Black Citizenship, Zoom, free, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • Green Apple Books celebrates the release of poet Dan Alter's new collection, My Little Book of Exiles, joining Dan Alter are poets Marcelo Hernandez Castillo, Cenzontle, and Tess Taylor, The Misremembered World, free, in-person, Green Apple Books on the Park, 1231 9th Avenue, San Francisco, and online via Zoom, 7:00 pm PST (Register for Zoom here:
  • The San Francisco Creative Writing Institute presents "Poetry III: Contemporary Poets and Poetry," with instructor Holly Hardy, this six-week workshop, January 20 to February 24, will explore the craft of poetry through the lens of established contemporary poets, each week will focus on a different poet using deep discussion of their work as inspiration for poetic experimentation, Zoom, $395, 5:30-8:30 pm PST (Register to attend:

21 JANUARY 2022 — friday

22 JANUARY 2022 — saturday

23 JANUARY 2022 — sunday

  • 19th Annual Berkeley Poetry Festival presents "Milvia Street Literary Journal: Poets of Berkeley City College," a reading by antmen pimental Mendoza, r.a.d. Leng Leng, Steve Fujimura, Rina Shaikh-Lesko, and Kai Sugioka-Stone, co-directed and hosted by MK Chavez and Sharon Coleman, via Zoom and Facebook Live, free, 1:00-2:00 pm PST (Zoom link:; For more information:,
  • 19th Annual Berkeley Poetry Festival presents their Lifetime Achievement Award and Reading by this year's award-winner, San Francisco poet Genny Lim, with a poetry reading by Minal Hajratwala, and Maw Shein Win, the award will be presented by City of Berkeley Councilperson Terry Taplin, co-directed and hosted by MK Chavez and Sharon Coleman, via Zoom and Facebook Live, free, 3:00-4:00 pm PST (Zoom link:; For more information:,
  • The Claremont Library's Fourth Sundays Reading Series features poet and photographer Adam O. Davis, Index of Haunted Houses, and poet Wendy Herbert, Dear Speciman, free, in-person, Claremont United Church of Christ, 233 Harrison Avenue, Claremont, 2:00 pm PST (More information here:
  • Book Passage presents Peter Mann reading from and discussing his debut novel The Torqued Man, Book Passage Ferry Building, 1 Ferry Building #42, San Francisco, free, 2:00 pm PST (For more information:

24 JANUARY 2022 — monday

  • San Francisco Public Library celebrates the release of ZYZZYVA No. 122, The Inter/Transnational Issue, with a night of readings featuring contributors from the issue, readers include C.J.A., Shelby Kinney-Lang, Marie Mutsuki Mockett, and Dean Rader, hosted by Oscar Villalon, ZYZZYVA managing editor, Zoom, free, 7:00-8:00 pm PST (For more information and to register, visit:

25 JANUARY 2022 — tuesday

  • San Francisco Public Library's Bernal Readers Book Club, read and discuss Amor Towles's A Gentleman in Moscow, a novel about a man sentenced to a life of house arrest in Moscow's Metropol Hotel during the Bolshevik revolution, in-person, Bernal Heights Meeting Room, 500 Cortland Avenue, San Francisco, free, 2:00-4:00pm PST (For more information, visit:
  • Cobalt Poets presents a reading featuring slam poet Generalissimo Bryan Franco, with open mic to follow, free, online via Zoom, 7:30 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • City Lights presents Peter Richardson in conversation with David Talbot, celebrating the book launch for Savage Journey: Hunter S. Thompson and the Weird Road to Gonzo, online via Zoom, free, 6:00 pm PST (Zoom link here:

26 JANUARY 2022 — wednesday

27 JANUARY 2022 — thursday

  • Library Foundation of Los Angeles and Young Literati present Wine and Wisdom featuring a conversation with journalist and poet Dana Goodyear, whose current project is the Lost Hills true crime podcast, hosted by Young Literati member Shayna Englin, Zoom, free, 7:00 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center celebrates the life of avant-garde Chicano poet Alfred Arteaga (1950-2008), with readings and discussions featuring poet Cherríe Moraga, A Xicana Codex of Changing Consciousness; artist and author Harry Gamboa Jr.; poet and educator Richard T. Rodríguez, Exemplars and Accomplices; Juan Felipe Herrera, U.S. Poet Laureate 2015-17, 187 Reasons Mexicanos Can't Cross the Border: Undocuments 1971-2007); and critic and translator Ryuta Imafuku, hosted by poet and editor David Lloyd, Dark Room, audience Q&A to follow, free, online, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:
  • City Lights presents Jordan Stein and Bruce Hainley discussing the life and afterlives of artist Jay DeFeo's Estocada, a work created in the shadow of her great painting, The Rose, online via Zoom, free, 6:00 pm PST (Zoom link here:

28 JANUARY 2022 — friday

29 JANUARY 2022 — saturday

30 JANUARY 2022 — sunday

31 JANUARY 2022 — monday

  • San Francisco Public Library presents Book Club, read and discuss Richard Matheson's award-winning novel Somewhere in Time, a moving romantic story of a modern man whose love for a woman he has never met allows him to literally transcend time, zoom, free, 7:30-8:30pm PST (For more information, visit:

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