2018 Poetry Flash Reading Series
Poetry Flash readings take place at Moe's Books, Berkeley, and at Diesel, A Bookstore, Oakland.
To find out more about the Poetry Flash Reading Series, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (510) 525-5476, weekday afternoons. ASL interpreters for the deaf and hearing impaired may be provided for these events with at least one week's notice. To request, email email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Our reading series venues are wheelchair accessible. Read more about the series on the Poetry Flash Reading Series page.
18 JANUARY 2018 — thursday
Chris Olander and Kim Shuck
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Chris Olander, River Light, and San Francisco Poet Laureate Kim Shuck, Sidewalk NDN, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Chris Olander's debut book of poems is River Light. Kirk Lumpkin says, "What has always impressed me about Chris Olander's poetry is how present, how kinetically alive the energies of Nature (birds, oaks, rivers, etc.) are in it and of how the words dance in the breath and sinew of it." Chris Olander is a performance poet, teacher, and naturalist, and a California Poets in the Schools poet-teacher and Poetry Out Loud coach.
Kim Shuck is the current Poet Laureate of San Francisco. Her latest publication is the chapbook Sidewalk NDN. Her other books include the books of poems Smuggling Cherokee, for which she won the Diane Decorah first book award by the Native Writers Circle of the Americas, Clouds Running In, and the prose work Rabbit Stories.
25 JANUARY 2018 — thursday
Dan Bellm and Annie Stenzel
Poetry Flash presents a reading by poet Dan Bellm, Deep Well, translator of Speaking in Song (hearing and forgetting), by Pura López Columé, and poet Annie Stenzel, The First Home Air After Absence, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Dan Bellm's new book of translation, Speaking in Song (hearing and forgetting) is from the Spanish of distinguished Mexican poet Pura López Columé; many of her poems in this book have been set to music by composers from Mexico, the United States, and the United Kingdom. His previous translations include the work of Mexican poet Jorge Esquinca and French poet Pierre Reverdy. He has published four books of poems, the latest Deep Well, and his honors include a prize from the Cleveland State University Poetry Center and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council.
Annie Stenzel's debut book of poems is The First Home Air After Absence. Dorianne Laux says, "Sensual, laced with wry wit, her writing shows us how the language of poetry and love will outlast us, speak for us even after the Japanese wisteria has overcome the shingled roof, smothering us with its beauty." Widely published in literary journals both in print and online, she works at a law firm in San Francisco.
28 JANUARY 2018 — sunday
Chana Bloch Tribute: Jeanne Foster, Sandra Gilbert, Peter Dale Scott, more
Poetry Flash presents a Tribute Reading for Chana Bloch, Invocation to Daughters, by her Writing Group: Dan Bellm, Jeanne Foster, Sandra Gilbert, Peter Dale Scott, Phyllis Stowell, and Alan Williamson, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
This tribute to the late poet Chana Bloch is a reading by six members of her close knit Writing Group. It is also a celebration of her posthumous book of poems, The Moon Is Almost Full; copies will be available at the event. Chana Bloch was a poet, translator, and teacher for many years at Mills College; she was much beloved in the Bay Area and beyond. Jane Hirshfield says of her new collection, "Each page verifies the beauty and scope and surge of a life both extraordinary and daily, embraced not in spite of our mortality, but because of it." The book will be available that this event. The readers from her Writing Group will be:
Poet and translator Dan Bellm, whose most recent book of poems is Deep Well.
Poet and translator Jeanne Foster's most recent book of poems is Goodbye, Silver Sister. She is professor of English and Creative Writing at Saint Mary's College in Moraga.
Poet, memoirist, critic, and teacher Sandra Gilbert, among whose recent books of poems is Belongings.
Former Canadian diplomat, poet, political thinker, and memoirist Peter Dale Scott, among whose books of poems is Coming to Jakarta: A Poem about Terror.
Poet, teacher, editor, and founding member of Saint Mary's College of California MFA program Phyllis Stowell, among whose books of poems is Sundered.
Poet, critic, and teacher Alan Williamson's most recent poetry collection is A Pattern More Complicated: New and Selected Poems.
1 FEBRUARY 2018 — thursday
Iris Jamahl Dunkle and Phyllis Meshulam
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Iris Jamahl Dunkle, Interrupted Geographies, and Phyllis Meshulam, Land of My Father's War, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Iris Jamahl Dunkle's new book of poems is Interrupted Geographies. Camille T. Dungy says, "While Iris Jamahl Dunkle writes specifically about particular places and people—some famous and some little known—there's no way to read these poems without understanding the ways she is always writing about you and also about me." She is the current Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, and her second collection, There's a Ghost in this Machine of Air, is about the untold history of Sonoma County. Her debut collection, Gold Passage, was selected by Ross Gay for the Trio Prize from Trio Press and was published in 2013.
Phyllis Meshulam's new book of poems is Land of My Father's War. Fred Marchant says, "In this book, the literal 'land of my father's war is Italy, where the poet's father served in World War II…However, the landscape of these beautifully crafted poems is wider than any one country, and deeper than any one moment in time. Phyllis Meshulam maps the landscape of consciousness in our time…" She is also author of the chapbooks Doll, Moon and Valley of Moon. Widely published in literary journals, she is anthologized, too, in the acclaimed anthology Veterans of War, Veterans of Peace. She is a teacher and the coordinator of both California Poets in the Schools and the nation-wide youth recitation series Poets Out Loud.
15 FEBRUARY 2018 — thursday
Hadara Bar-Nadav and Dean Rader
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Hadara Bar-Nadav, The New Nudity, and Dean Rader, Self-Portrait as Wikipedia Entry, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Dean Rader's new book of poems is Self-Portrait as Wikipedia Entry. ZZYZZYVA says, "By writing honestly about the difficulties of self-representation, Rader represents himself as a writer who cares deeply about his audience and his craft." His debut collection, Works & Days, won the T.S. Eliot Poetry Prize, and his chapbook, Landscape Portrait Figure Form, was named one of the Best Poetry Books of the Year by the Barnes & Noble Review. He's editor of the anthology 99 Poems for the 99 Percent: An Anthology of Poems, and a co-editor of Bullet into Bells: Poets & Citizens Respond to Gun Violence. He's also written several academic books, including Engaged Resistance: Contemporary American Indian Art, Literature, and Film from Alcatraz to the NMAI.
Hadara Bar-Nadav's new book of poems is The New Nudity. Amy Gerstler says, "The New Nudity gives voice to the souls of objects. In these dark, spoken still lives, personification becomes a kind of conjuring, a mystical art rife with nuance." Her previous collections include Lullaby (with Exit Sign), The Frame Called Ruin, and A Glass of Milk to Kiss Goodnight. She's also co-author of the best-selling textbook Writing Poems. She's received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Society of America.
18 FEBRUARY 2018 — sunday
Susan Cohen, Lucille Lang Day, Judy Halebsky, Mary Mackey, more
Poetry Flash presents a reading and launch celebration for Know Me Here: An Anthology of Poetry by Women, edited by Katherine Hastings, with readings by contributors Susan Cohen, Lucille Lang Day, Miriam Bird Greenberg, Judy Halebsky, Elizabeth C. Herron, Mary Mackey, Connie Post, Julia Vose, Laura Walker, and Kathleen Winter, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
Know Me Here: An Anthology of Poetry By Women is edited with an introduction by poet and radio host Katherine Hastings, founder of the WordTemple Poetry Series and host of WordTemple on NPR affiliate KRCB FM. She is the former Sonoma County Poet Laureate. Her most recent book of poems is Shakespeare & Stein Walk Into a Bar.
Readers for the event include contributors:
Susan Cohen, whose second book of poems is A Different Wakeful Animal.
Lucille Lang Day, publisher of Scarlet Tanager Press and author of ten poetry books and chapbooks, most recently Becoming an Ancestor, two children’s books, and a memoir.
Miriam Bird Greenberg, author of In the Volcano’s Mouth, winner of the 2015 Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize for Poetry.
Judy Halebsky, author of two books of poems, Tree Line and Sky=Empty, which won the New Issues Prize.
Elizabeth C. Herron, member of PEN, Fellow of the International League of Conservation Writers, and author of four chapbooks and a book of short fiction.
Mary Mackey, author of seven books of poems, including Sugar Zone, winner of a PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award, and fourteen novels, one of which made the New York Times Bestseller List.
Connie Post, author of the book of poems Floodwater, winner of the Lyrebird Award; she is also winner of the Crab Creek Poetry Award.
Julia Vose, author of the collection Moved Out on the Inside; she is also the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and an Academy of American Poets Prize.
Laura Walker, author of the poetry collections story, Follow-Haswed, bird book, rimertown/ an atlas, and swarm lure.
Kathleen Winter, whose new collection, I will not kick my friends won the 2017 Elixir Poetry Prize.
22 FEBRUARY 2018 — thursday
Brynn Saito and Kathleen Winter
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Kathleen Winter to launch her brand new book, I will not kick my friends, winner of the 2017 Elixir Poetry Prize, and Brynn Saito, Power Made Us Swoon, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
Kathleen Winter’s new book of poems I will not kick my friends won the 2017 Elixir Poetry Prize; this reading and celebration is the book launch. Bob Hicok says, “Kathleen Winter is unusually attuned to the intersection of the imagined and the common place. She weaves her loves—personal, artistic, intellectual—into her daily life, making this a book of passionate intimacies.” Her first book of poems, Nostalgia for the Criminal Past, won the Texas Institute of Letters first book Award.
Brynn Saito’s new book of poems is Power Made Us Swoon. David Rivard says, “Brynn Saito is committed to seeing what is most human about us, without resort to the tactics of noise and exaggeration. It is not easy to be austerely uncertain and open-hearted at the same time, but she pulls it off beautifully.” Her previous collection is The Palace of Contemplating Departure. She is a winner of the Benjamin Saltman Award, was a finalist for a Northern California Book Award, and is a recipient of a Kundiman Asian American Poetry Fellowship and a Poets 11 award from the San Francisco Public Library.
18 MARCH 2018 — sunday
So Many Voices: Kim Shuck, Gail Entrekin, Joseph Zaccardi, more
Poetry Flash presents a reading and celebration for So Many Voices, a Poetic Matrix Press twentieth anniversary anthology edited by John Peterson, James Downs, and Joe Milosch, of writings published by Poetic Matrix Press authors from 1997-2017, contributors reading: Kim Shuck, Gail Entrekin, Charles Entrekin, James Downs, Joseph Milosch, Leroy F. Moore, Jr., Patricia Nelson, Chris Olander, and Joseph Zaccardi, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
So Many Voices is a new anthology celebrating Poetic Matrix Press’s twentieth anniversary, selecting from the work of their authors 1997 to 2017. Edited by John Peterson, James Downs, and Joe Milosch, with a foreword from James Downs and John Peterson, the writings in So Many Voices were gleaned from sixty Poetic Matrix Press books by forty-five ethnically and aesthetically diverse authors, including selections of women’s studies and literary nonfiction. Contributing authors reading at the event:
James Downs is author of the poetry collection Merge with the River.
Gail Entrekin and Charles Entrekin; her most recent book of poems is Rearrangement of the Invisible; she is co-author with Charles of the poetry collection The Art of Healing; his most recent book of poems is Portrait of a Romance; he was the founder of the Berkeley Poets Cooperative and the Berkeley Poets Workshop and Press.
Joseph Milosch is author of The Lost Pilgrimage Poems.
Leroy F. Moore, Jr. is a Black disabled activist, poet and writer, hip-hop lover, and feminist, author of author of Black Kripple Delivers Poetry & Lyrics.
Patricia Nelson is an attorney and environmentalist, author of the book of poems Spokes of Dream or Bird.
Chris Olander is a performance poet, teacher, and naturalist whose first full-length book of poems is River Light.
Kim Shuck is the current Poet Laureate of San Francisco; her books include the poetry collections Smuggling Cherokee and Sidewalk NDN and the book of poetic fiction Rabbit Stories; her heritage is Tsulagi, Sauk, Fox, and Polish. She is the first Native American poet laureate of a major American city.
Joseph Zaccardi is a former Marin County Poet Laureate; his fourth book of poems is A Wolf Stands Alone in Water.
29 MARCH 2018 — thursday
Ivan Argüelles, Jack Foley, Jacob Smullyan
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by surrealist poet Ivan Argüelles, poet and KPFA "Cover to Cover" radio host Jack Foley, and poet, writer, and publisher Jacob Smullyan, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Ivan Argüelles is an acclaimed surrealist poet, whose collection Looking for Mary Lou: Illegal Syntax won the William Carlos Williams Award in 1989. Recent books of poems include Fragments from a Gone World, Duo Poemata: Ilion—a Transcription & Altertumwissenschaft, and Fiat Lux. He is the founder and co-editor of Pantograph Press.
Jack Foley has published fifteen books of poems, five books of criticism, and Visions and Affiliations, a 'chronoencyclopedia' of California poetry from 1940 to 2005. Recent collections include Riverrun, about which Stephen Cole says, "Sad, exhilarating and imaginatively original true adventure in Poetry!" Grief Songs, which will be the focus of this reading, is a collection of elegies for Adelle, his wife of almost fifty-five years, a poet herself and his partner for years in performing his unique 'multi-voiced' poetry. Grief Songs and The Tiger and Other Tales, his collection of short stories, were both published by Sagging Meniscus Press. Foley is host of "Cover to Cover," his poetry radio show on Wednesday afternoons on KPFA-FM.
Jacob Smullyan's new book of prose poems is Errata. Charles Holdefer of Dactyl Review says, "To describe a book as unclassifiable is, of course, to classify it, but that fact is entirely in keeping with the spirit of Jacob Smullyan's Errata…" He is also author of the poem cycle Dribble. A musician as well as a writer, he is the founder of Sagging Meniscus Press and Exacting Clam magazine.
5 APRIL 2018 — thursday
Jennifer S. Cheng and Barbara Tomash
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Barbara Tomash, PRE-, and Jennifer S. Cheng, House A, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Jennifer S. Cheng's forthcoming book of poems is MOON: Letters, Maps, Poems, winner of the Tarpaulin Sky Book Award. Jennifer Tseng says, "Each of the voices in Jennifer S. Cheng's MOON speaks as if she's the 'the last girl on earth.' Alone in a vast, constantly changing Universe, she asks urgent questions…With curiosity and attention, MOON shines its light on inquiry as art, asking as making. In the tradition of Fanny Howe's poetics of bewilderment, Cheng gives us a poetics of possibility." Her previous full-length collection is House A; she has also published an image-text chapbook, Invocation: An Essay. Having grown up in Texas, Hong Kong, and Connecticut, she now lives in San Francisco.
Barbara Tomash's brand new book of poems is PRE-. Gillian Conoley says, "Barbara Tomash's terrific new book PRE- reminds us of Emerson's great notion that every word was once a poem…Barbara Tomash opens up the word and the world in these poems." She is the author of three previous collections, Arboreal, The Secret of White, and Flying in Water, which won the 2005 Winnow First Poetry Award. Earlier versions of PRE- were finalists for both the 2016 Colorado Poetry Prize and the Rescue Black Box Poetry Prize.
8 APRIL 2018 — sunday
Lara Gularte and Mary Mackey
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Lara Gularte, Kissing the Bee and Mary Mackey, Travelers With No Ticket Home, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
Lara Gularte's debut book of poems is Kissing the Bee. Vamberto Freitas says, "This is a poetry testifying [to] our perpetual search for self, and also an eloquent voyage in search of inner liberation…Her poetry is consistently one of great erudition, sensuality, and Catholicism's role within the Portuguese-American presence in the United States." Her poetry, inspired by her Azorean heritage, is included in a book edited by Freitas called Imaginários Luso-Americanos e Azorianos; she also traveled to Cuba in 2017 with a delegation of American poets to appear at the Festival Internacional de Poesia de la Habana. She is currently an assistant editor for Narrative Magazine.
Mary Mackey's new book of poems is Travelers With No Ticket Home. B. L. Kennedy, The Gipsy Art Show, says, " Mary Mackey's poetry intertwines English and Portuguese in a brilliant, lyrical meditation on nature, childhood, ad the destruction of the rainforests of the Amazon, and the real and psychological landscapes of travel." She's published fourteen novels, one of which made The New York Times Bestseller List, and a number of poetry collections of which the penultimate, Sugar Zone, won the 2012 Josephine Miles PEN Oakland Award.
26 APRIL 2018 — thursday
Arisa White and Maw Shein Win
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Maw Shein Win, Invisible Gifts, and Arisa White, You're the Most Beautiful Thing That Happened, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Arisa White's new book of poems is You're the Most Beautiful Thing That Happened. Dara Wier says that she's a "tender poet who always brings into view what's strange and unusual and critical for our survival. Her poems consider what it requires to meditate and meet what's unknown without flinching." A Cave Canem graduate fellow, she's also the author of Black Pearl, Post Pardon, Hurrah's Nest, and A Penny Saved. A northwest regional representative for Nepantla: A Journal Dedicated to Queer Poets of Color and creator of the Beautiful Things Project, she curates cultural events and artistic collaborations that center narratives of queer and trans people of color.
Maw Shein Win's debut full-length collection is Invisible Gifts: Poems. Genny Lim says, "Maw Shein Win's poems resonate like post-modern haiku. Her idiosyncratic associations touch the heart and defy the intellect in their koan-like logic and arresting imagery." She is a Burmese American poet, editor, and educator. A frequent collaborator with artists, musicians, and other writers, along with composer and musician Amanda Chaudhary she is part of the musical duo Pitta of the Mind, combining poetry with electronic music; she worked with Los Angeles artist Mark Dutcher to produce the book Ruins of a glittering palace, poetry and images, and her poems are featured in Megan Wilson's mural Flower Interruption in a special exhibition, Flower Power, at San Francisco's Asian Art Museum. She is the first and current Poet Laureate of El Cerrito.
6 MAY 2018 — sunday
Lynne Knight and Beth Spencer
Poetry Flash presents a Sixteen Rivers Press Double Book Launch for Lynne Knight, The Language of Forgetting and Beth Spencer, The Cloud Museum, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
Lynne Knight's new book of poems is The Language of Forgetting. Al Young says, "Lynne Knight's mindful, lyrical The Language of Forgetting reads like a heart-and-soul video, Season One. Against a big backdrop of learn-and-let-go, each poem-episode streams me into her book's majestic mosaic, which I happen to feel as love vs. love." She has published five poetry chapbooks and five full-length collections, the most recent of which is The Persistence of Longing, which was nominated for a Northern California Book Award. Her work has appeared in Best American Poetry; other honors and awards include an NEA grant, a Prix de l'Alliance Française 2006, a Poetry Society of America Lucille Medwick Memorial Award, and the 2009 Rattle Poetry Award. I Know, her translation of Ito Naga's Je Sais, was published by Sixteen Rivers in 2013.
Beth Spencer's debut book of poems, also from Sixteen Rivers, is The Cloud Museum; the book explores two worlds, the persona of a sage named Alice and the persona of the artist Jay DeFeo; Pamela Uschuk says, "Rich in imagist language, Spencer's poems transcend simple explanation as they transform us at many levels. Much as an oil painting accrues power and depth layer by subtle layer, this collection opens out and out, bursting into the essence and vortex of mystery itself." She is the founder and editor of Bear Star Press, publishers of poetry and short fiction by writers in Western states.
10 MAY 2018 — thursday
Jacqueline Berger and Michael Brooks Cryer
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Jacqueline Berger, The Day You Miss Your Exit, and Michael Brooks Cryer, Selected Proverbs, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Jacqueline Berger's new book of poems is The Day You Miss Your Exit. Maria Hummel says, "This strong, shining collection is erected over the ruins of loss—the passing of both Berger's parents, and, along with them, the old analog life of the 20th Century. At turns wry, dark, funny, and hungry for meaning, Berger's poems give new voice to grief and aging at a time when even the ways we remember are changing." She's published three previous collections, The Mythologies of Danger, winner of the Bluestem Poetry Prize and the Northern California Book Award in Poetry, Things That Burn, winner of the Agha Shahid Ali Poetry, and The Gift That Arrives Broken, which won the Autumn House Poetry Prize. Her poetry has also been featured on Garrison Keillor's Writers Almanac.
Michael Brooks Cryer's debut book of poems is Selected Proverbs. Loren Goodman says, "Cryer's linguistic Tinguely machines make us feel so many things we almost forget it's all about the music and romance. Whatever happens, there's great wisdom in these proverbs: now shut up and listen." His chapbook, Channels, Frequencies & Sequences, was published in 2017. He's also an occasional music critic for the Phoenix New Times in Arizona, where he lives.
17 MAY 2018 — thursday
Melissa Stein and C. Dale Young
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Melissa Stein, Terrible Blooms, and poet C. Dale Young, The Affliction, reading from his new collection of linked fiction, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Melissa Stein's new book of poems is Terrible Blooms. The New York Times says, "Ms. Stein reminds us that there is no honey—rough, or otherwise—without the sting." Her first book of poems, Rough Honey, won the APR/Honickman First Book Prize. She's received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and the National Endowment for the Arts. She's a freelance editor in San Francisco.
C. Dale Young's new book, The Affliction, is his first collection of fiction. Charles Baxter says, "The linked stories in C. Dale Young's The Affliction send us off to a magical location, where the fantastical can seem both miraculous and ordinary. These tales treat life-and-death matters with a beautifully eloquent fervor, and, like the stories of Julio Cortázar, they remind us off how varied and unpredictable short stories, like the world itself, can be." He's published four collections of poetry, most recently The Halo, and his poetry has been anthologized several times in Best American Poetry. He's received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation. He practices full-time as a medical doctor.
24 MAY 2018 — thursday
Carol Muske-Dukes and Jane Mead
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Carol Muske-Dukes, Blue Rose, and Jane Mead, World of Made and Unmade, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
Jane Mead's new book of poems is World of Made and Unmade. The late poet C.D. Wright said, "As the laundry room floods and the grape harvest gets done; as Michoacán waits for another time, her beautiful, practical mother is dying. Ashes are scattered in the pecan groves of her own Rincon, her own corner of the world, and the poet, in elementary script, draws a sustaining record of the only feeling worth the struggle…" She's authored four previous collections, most recently Money, Money, Money | Water, Water, Water, and her honors include a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, a Whiting Writers Award, and a Lannan Foundation Completion Grant.
Carol Muske-Dukes's new book of poems is Blue Rose. Linda Gregerson says, "Scathing intelligence and an open heart: the most difficult combination in the world, and bountifully manifest on every page. In the birth room, at the death bed, beneath the falling ash of a California wildfire, before the whole, hurt spectacle of an imperiled and beloved world, these poems remind us what it's truly like to see and feel." Author of eight poetry collections, including Sparrow, a finalist for the National Book Award, she's also published four novels, two collections of essays, and co-edited Crossing State Lines: An American Renga with Bob Holman. She was California Poet Laureate from 2008 to 2011.
14 JUNE 2018 — thursday
Gillian Conoley and Paul Hoover
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Paul Hoover from his new collection, The Book of Unnamed Things, with Gillian Conoley, Peace, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
MORE ABOUT THE READERS
Gillian Conoley’s most recent book of poems is Peace. A. Anupama, in Numéro Cinq, says, “White space percolates this lyric, while the current lull in American military actions forms the occasion of this book, Gillian Conoley’s seventh poetry collection. With poems titled “late democracy,’ “[Peace] contrary to history,” and “Trying to Write a Poem about Gandhi,” the work pulls one way and then pushes back another, testing the inner ground for breath.” Others of her collections include The Plot Genie, Profane Halo, and Lovers in the Used World. Her work has been anthologized in Best American Poetry, American Hybrid, and Postmodern American Poetry. Her translations include Thousand Times Broken, Three Books, three previously untranslated books of the French poet Henri Michaux. Founder and editor of the literary journal VOLT, she has, among her honors, four Pushcart Prizes, the Jerome J. Shestack Prize from American Poetry Review, an NEA fellowship, and a Fund for Poetry Award.
Paul Hoover’s new book of poems is The Book of Unnamed Things. Mary Jo Bang says, “Hoover’s concern with language’s representational inadequacy is shared by the L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets he’s championed for years.…However, his own poems are more direct, more lyrical, and sometimes seethingly and seductively melancholic. Central to all of them (regardless of language’s irrefutable limitations) is his keen intelligence and laconic wit.” Author of fourteen previous poetry collections, he co-edited with Maxine Chernoff the literary magazine New American Writing and co-translated with her The Selected Poetry of Friedrich Hölderlin, which won a PEN-USA Translation Award. Editor, as well, of Postmodern American Poetry: A Norton Anthology, his honors include an NEA Fellowship, the Frederick Bock Award of Poetry, and the Jerome J. Shestack Prize of American Poetry Review.
24 JUNE 2018 — sunday
Kim Addonizio, Donna Masini, Brittany Perham
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Kim Addonizio, Mortal Trash, Donna Masini, 4:30 Movie, and Brittany Perham, Double Portrait, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
MORE ABOUT THE READERS
Kim Addonizio's latest book of poems is Mortal Trash. Terrance Hayes calls it "Peerless poetry…reliably remarkable clarity, edge, and emotion." This is her seventh collection; she's been a finalist for the National Book Award, received a Guggenheim Fellowship, two NEA Fellowships, and a Pushcart Prize. Among her other publications are four books of fiction and her Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life. An occasional presenter for BBC radio, she teaches workshops privately and online.
Donna Masini's new book of poems is 4:30 Movie. Tracy K. Smith says, "Truly inspired…4:30 Movie is a stunning, playful, searing, healing collection that will enlarge the reader and revive something crucial in American poetry." Her two previous collections are Turning to Fiction and That Kind of Danger. She has also published a novel, About Yvonne. The recipient of an NEA Fellowship and another from the New York Foundation for the Arts, she has won a Pushcart Prize and appeared in Best American Poetry 2015.
Brittany Perham's second book of poems, Double Portrait, won the Barnard Women Poets Prize, selected by Claudia Rankine. Eavan Boland says, "This unswerving, ambitious work brings the reader on a wild and thrilling journey. The poems lead into a world where desire, the body, memory and invention are looked at in the bright light of language; nothing forgiven, everything laid bare.…" She is also the author of the full-length collection The Curiosities and, with Kim Addonizio, the chapbook The Night Could Go in Either Direction. A former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, she is now a Jones Lecturer in their Creative Writing Program.
19 JULY 2018 — thursday
Elizabeth Cooperman and Thomas Walton
Poetry Flash presents a reading by Seattle poets Elizabeth Cooperman and Thomas Walton, from their new book, The Last Mosaic, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, (www.moesbooks.com)
Elizabeth Cooperman and Thomas Walton have jointly written and published The Last Mosaic, a 'mosaic' of braided prose segments, celebrating their trip to Rome and weaving their impressions of the "Eternal City." David Shields says, "To be human is to be broken. The Last Mosaic not only explains these ideas; it embodies them. It's also extremely vivid, precise, smart, and galvanizing."
Elizabeth Cooperman is Art Director at PageBoy Magazine, and she is co-editor of the anthology Life is Short—Art is Shorter. Her writing has been widely published in literary journals.
Thomas Walton edits PageBoy Magazine. He's author of the anti-lyric lyric essay This World Is All That Does Befall Us and the chapbook A Name Is Just A Mane. His poetry has appeared in ZYZZYVA, Bombay Gin, and many other journals.
26 JULY 2018 — thursday
William O'Daly and Peter Weltner
Poetry Flash presents a reading by translator and poet William O'Daly, from Book of Twilight his new book of Neruda translations, just nominated for the Northern California Book Award in Translation, and Peter Weltner, The Return of What's Been Lost, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Famed Spanish translator William O'Daly's new book of translation is Book of Twilight, by Nobel Laureate Pablo Neruda, which is Neruda's debut book, never before published in its entirety in the United States. The bilingual collection has just been nominated for the 2018 Northern California Book Award in Translation. His translations include eight other books of poetry by Pablo Neruda. He published a full-length collection of his own poetry, Water Ways, in 2017, with prose and photography by J.S. Graustein. A second collection, Yarrow and Smoke, will appear in 2018. He is a National Endowment for the Arts Fellow, and his poems, essays, and translations have been widely published in literary journals and anthologies. He was profiled by Mike Leonard for The Today Show.
Peter Weltner's latest book is The Return of What's Been Lost, fourteen stories and fourteen 'choral' poems, which, David Morris says, "meditate on loss, personal and cultural, and how mourning embodies in the self, incarnate and haunting, the hugeness of what is missing." He's published five previous books of fiction and six full-length collections of poetry, most recently The Light of the Sun Become Sea. His work has also appeared in some national anthologies, including Prize Stories: the O. Henry Awards, 1993 and 1998, as well as in many literary journals and magazines.
2 AUGUST 2018 — thursday
Martín Espada, Lauren Marie Schmidt, Gary Soto
Poetry Flash presents a reading by poets Martín Espada, Vivas to Those Who Have Failed, Lauren Marie Schmidt, Filthy Labors, and Gary Soto, The Elements of San Joaquin, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
Martín Espada's new book of poems is Vivas to Those Who Have Failed. Sandra Cisneros calls him "the Pablo Neruda of North American authors." Recent collections include The Trouble Ball, The Republic of Poetry, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and Alabanza, whose title poem has been widely anthologized and performed. In all, he's published fifteen books as poet, editor, essayist, and translator. A former tenants lawyer for the Latino community of the greater Boston area, he's received a Shelley Memorial Award, a Guggenhein Fellowship, and he's just won the prestigious 2018 Ruth Lilly Prize for lifetime accomplishment.
Lauren Marie Schimdt's new book of poems is Filthy Labors. Previous collections include Two Black Eyes and a Patch of Hair Missing, Psalms of the Dining Room, and The Voodoo Doll Parade, winner of the Main Street Rag Author's Choice Chapbook Series. Among her prizes are the So to Speak Poetry Prize, Neil Postman Prize for Metaphor, and The Janet B. McCabe Prize for Poetry.
Gary Soto's a poet, essayist, and novelist. His new book of poems is a revised, updated edition of The Elements of San Joaquin, his first collection, originally published in 1977, about which La Bloga had said, "The poet has an impeccable memory for capturing the music and sounds of his childhood. He carries a heavy sense of nostalgia with…grace…" He has since published twelve poetry collections, including New and Selected Poems, which was a National Book Award finalist as well as three novels and a memoir among other books. He has also received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation.
30 AUGUST 2018 — thursday
Joseph Lease, Donna de la Perrière, Natasha Sajé
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Joseph Lease, The Body Ghost, Donna de la Perrière, Night Calendar, and Natasha Sajé, Vivarium, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Joseph Lease's new book of poems is The Body Ghost. Norman Fischer says, "I really don't know how Joseph Lease does this. Reaches such lyric heights with such deli-cacy. With skillful use of anaphora, and perfect, various open-verse forms transformed page to page, Lease is a tour de force master of prosody." His previous collections include Testify and Broken World. He's received The Academy of American Poets Prize, among other grants and awards, and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics.
Donna de la Perrière's latest books of poems are Saint Erasure and a chapbook, Night Calen-dar. Andrew Joron says, "Donna de la Perrière's consum-mately crafted lines extend the argument of postmodern lyric into a space of mystery." Her previous full-length collection is True Crime. She received a 2009 Fund for Poetry award.
Natasha Sajé's newest book of poems is Vivarium. Dean Young says, "Resourceful, restless, wit-ty and substantially intelligent—what a rare combination of erudition and nimbleness this group of poems exhibits. Their range is marvelously wide in both form and tone." Her first book of poems, Red Under the Skin, won the Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize, and her second, Bend, was given the Utah Book Award in Poetry. She is also the author of the book of essays Windows and Doors: A Poet Reads Literary Theory.
30 SEPTEMBER 2018 — sunday
Mary Mackey and Maurya Simon
Poetry Flash presents a book launch reading by Mary Mackey, The Jaguars That Prowl Our Dreams: New and Selected Poems 1974-2018, with Maurya Simon, The Wilderness: New & Selected Poems 1980-2016, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
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Mary Mackey’s new book of poems is The Jaguars That Prowl Our Dreams: New and Selected Poems 1974-2018, with an introduction by D. Nurkse. Maxine Hong Kingston says, “Mary Mackey’s poems are powerful, beautiful, and have extraordinary range. This is the poetry of a woman who has lived richly, and felt deeply. May her concern for the planet help save it.” She’s author of seven previous collections, including Sugar Zone, which won the 2012 Josephine Miles/PEN Oakland Award and was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. She’s also published fourteen novels, one of which was on the New York Times Best Seller list.
Maurya Simon’s new book of poems is The Wilderness: New & Selected Poems 1980-2016. Richard Tillinghast says, “The Wilderness…makes clear what readers of hers over the years have increasingly come to feel—that Maurya Simon’s one of the strongest, most humane, imaginative, compassionate, and flat-out brilliant writers of her generation.” She is the author of nine collections of poetry, and her work has appeared in some two hundred anthologies. Among her honors are a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and two distinguished prizes from the Poetry Society of America; she has also twice served as a Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome.
4 OCTOBER 2018 — thursday
Watershed: Ann Fisher-Wirth and Iris Jamahl Dunkle
Poetry Flash presents a Watershed Environmental Festival Kick Off reading by Ann Fisher-Wirth, Mississippi and The Ecopoetry Anthology, a past featured reader at Watershed, and Iris Jamahl Dunkle, Interrupted Geographies, who is reading at the Strawberry Creek Walk and the Watershed Festival on October 13, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Iris Jamahl Dunkle's book of poems is Interrupted Geographies. She is a featured reader on the Strawberry Creek Walk and the Watershed Environmental Poetry stage on October 13 in Berkeley. Camille T. Dungy says, "While Iris Jamahl Dunkle writes specifically about particular places and people—some famous and some little known—there's no way to read these poems without understanding the ways she is always writing about you and also about me." She is the former Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, and her second collection, There's a Ghost in this Machine of Air, is about the untold history of Sonoma County. Her debut collection, Gold Passage, was selected by Ross Gay for the Trio Prize from Trio Press (2013).
A previous featured reader at Watershed, Ann Fisher-Wirth's new book of poems is Mississippi, a "verbal/pictorial" collaboration with Maude Schuyler Clay, an acclaimed, much exhibited Mississippi-born photographer. Billy Collins says, "Fisher-Wirth's poems are not direct responses to Clay's photographs. Rather, her poems are voices–sometimes down-home, other times, uptown–that offer a complementary way of calling forth the spirit of a particular landscape. The attention of the eye and the ear are both quickened by this winning collaboration." Ann Fisher-Wirth is a poet known for her environmental focus; she is the co-editor of The Ecopoetry Anthology (2013). Her own collections include Blue Window, Five Terraces, Carta Marina, and Dream Cabinet. Among her honors are the Rita Dove Poetry Award, the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Poetry Award, and two Mississippi Arts Commission Poetry Fellowships.
7 OCTOBER 2018 — sunday
Heather June Gibbons and Terese Svoboda
Poetry Flash presents a reading by Terese Svoboda, Anything That Burns You: A Portrait of Lola Ridge, Radical Poet, with Heather June Gibbons, Her Mouth as Souvenir, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
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Heather June Gibbons's debut book of poems is Her Mouth as Souvenir, which won the Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize. A graduate of the Iowa Writer's Workshop, she has also authored two chapbooks, Sore Songs and Flyover. Widely published in literary journals, she has received awards and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Vermont Studio Center. She teaches at San Francisco State University.
Terese Svoboda's new book is the prose work Anything That Burns You: A Portrait of Lola Ridge, Radical Poet. Robert Pinsky says, "Radical. Modernist, fiery, glamorous, feminist–adjectives and categories can only gesture toward the enduringly significant life and works of the poet Lola Ridge, whose story has been gracefully told, with her poems lucidly understood by Terese Svoboda." She is the author of six highly acclaimed novels and five books of poetry, most recently Professor Harriman's Steam Air-Ship, as well as Cleaned the Crocodile's Teeth, a translation from the South Sudanese language Nuer. Her opera Wet premiered at L.A.'s Disney Hall in 2005. Among her honors are a 2013 Guggenheim Fellowship, the Bobst Prize, an Iowa Poetry Prize, an O. Henry Award for the short story, and three New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships.
28 OCTOBER 2018 — sunday
Susan Griffin, Forrest Hamer, Matthew Zapruder, more
Poetry Flash presents a celebration for America, We Call Your Name, the new Sixteen Rivers anthology, with an all-star contributors reading by Susan Griffin, Forrest Hamer, Chiyuma Elliott, Dawn McGuire, Matthew Zapruder, Peter Dale Scott, and Don Stang, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
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America, We Call Your Name is a brand new anthology from Sixteen Rivers Press. The featured contributors reading at this event are:
Susan Griffin, Forrest Hamer, Chiyuma Elliott, Dawn McGuire, Matthew Zapruder, Peter Dale Scott, and Don Stang.
Edited by Murray Silverstein, Gerald Fleming, Lynne Knight, Carolyn Miller, Jeanne Wagner, and Helen Wickes, America, We Call Your Name was born in response to the 2016 Presidential election. It combines the voices of poets from across America—from red states and blue states, high schools and nursing homes, big cities and small towns—with the voices of poets from other countries and other times. From Virgil and Dante to Claudia Rankine and Mai Der Vang, from Milton to Merwin, from Po-Chü-i to Robin Coste Lewis, these voices—now raucous, now muted, now lyric, now plain—join together here in dissent and in praise, in grief and alarm, in vision and hope. The 126 poems in this book call out to America in resistance to threats to our democracy and in the resilient belief that this fragile, imperfect form of government can and must be preserved. "These poets have an urgent message to share with you," writes Camille T. Dungy in the foreword. "This message is brand new, and it is also eternal. Read carefully. What you learn here might just save your life."
1 NOVEMBER 2018 — thursday
D. Nurkse and Erin Rodoni
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by D. Nurkse, Love in the Last Days: After Tristan and Iseult, and Erin Rodini, Body, in Good Light, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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D. Nurkse's new book of poems is Love in the Last Days: After Tristan and Iseult. Philip Levine said, "The voice behind these poems…that deepest voice we hear rarely if ever and then only in poems, the voice of those closest to us, those we love and care for and who—because they are human—remain mysteries…No one is writing more potently than this." He is author of ten previous collections of poems. A former Laureate of Brooklyn, his recent honors include a Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Guggenheim fellowship. He has also written about human rights.
Erin Rodoni is the author of two recent poetry collections: Body, in Good Light, from Sixteen Rivers Press, and A Landscape for Loss, winner of the Stevens Award sponsored by the National Federation of State Poetry Societies. Sandra Alcosser said of Body, in Good Light, "A reader slips into this delicate and gracious book of poems as if into an estuary, subject to the waxing and waning of its subtle currents. Erin Rodoni's generous spirit flows forward as she creates her vision through exquisite and mysterious poems: 'Our muscles are toned to transfer/ gentleness. From lover to child. From stranger/ to self and back again.'" Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Best New Poets, Blackbird, Colorado Review, and Poetry Northwest, among others. In 2017, she won the Ninth Letter Literary Award for poetry and The Montreal International Poetry Prize.
11 NOVEMBER 2018 — sunday
Lisa Dordal and Rebecca Foust
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Lisa Dordal, for Mosaic of the Dark, and Rebecca Foust, Paradise Drive, wheelchair accessible, East Bay Booksellers (formerly Diesel), 5433 College Avenue, Oakland, 3:00 (510/653-9965, ebbooksellers.com)
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Lisa Dordal's new book is Mosaic of the Dark. "A debut poetry collection [that] explores faith and sexuality. Humming with inspired metaphors and everyday relevance, these poems are gems."—Kirkus Review. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and is the recipient of an Academy of American Poets University Prize and the Robert Watson. Her poetry has appeared in Best New Poets, Ninth Letter, CALYX, Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse, The Greensboro Review, and elsewhere. She teaches at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee.
Rebecca Foust most recent book of poems is Paradise Drive, winner of the Press 53 Award for Poetry. Thomas Lux says, "There is great music in these poems, and sonnet after sonnet is masterful. Not since Berryman's Henry have I been so engaged by a persona: Pilgrim, who 'like most of we" is good and bad, hapless sometimes, other times approaching wisdom, always sending deeper and deeper her primary roots." Her previous books include God, Seed: Poetry and Art About the Natural World and All That Gorgeous Pitiless Song. Among her honors are a Foreword Book of the Year Award, an MMM Press Poetry Book Prize, and two Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook prizes. She is the current Poet Laureate of Marin County.
15 NOVEMBER 2018 — thursday
Indigo Moor and Amber Flora Thomas
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Indigo Moor, In the Room of Thirsts & Hungers, and Amber Flora Thomas, Red Channel in the Rupture, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Indigo Moor's new book of poems is In the Room of Thirsts & Hungers. Camille T. Dungy says, "The interlacing narratives of In the Room of Thirsts & Hungers suggests that our world is nothing so much as a mirror, revealing who we are and have always been. These carefully-wrought and brightly-imagined poems are both timely and timeless." Also a scriptwriter and author, Moor is Poet Laureate of Sacramento. His previous collections are Tap-root and Through the Stonecutter's Window, which won Northwestern University Press's Cave Canem prize. His full-length play Live! at the Excelsior was a finalist for the Images Theatre Playwright Award and has been optioned for a film.
Amber Flora Thomas's new book of poems is Red Channel in the Rupture. Susan Terris says, "Amber Flora Thomas writes about a world where no snake, bat, bug or any animal escapes her focus or her respectful awe. With the same intensity, she examines parents, friends, lovers, and self. Her poems, though often fierce, are gorgeous and lyrical in nature; and there's a mystery to them." Eye of Water, her first book of poems, was selected by Harryette Mullen for the 2004 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. The Rabbits Could Sing, her second, was selected by Peggy Shumaker for the Alaska Literary Series. A recipient of the Dylan Thomas American Poet Prize, the Richard Peterson Prize, and the Ann Stanford Prize, she is a Cave Canem Fellow and faculty member. She was born and raised in northern California.
29 NOVEMBER 2018 — thursday
Persis Karim and Sholeh Wolpé
Poetry Flash presents a poetry reading by Persis Karim, poet and editor, Let Me Tell You Where I've Been: Writing by Women of the Iranian Diaspora, and poet, translator, playwright Sholeh Wolpé, The Conference of Birds, wheelchair accessible, Moe's Books, 2476 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley, 7:30 (510/849-2087, www.moesbooks.com)
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Persis Karim is a poet, editor, and Professor of Comparative Literature at San Francisco State, where she also directs The Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies. She has edited or co-edited three important anthologies, Tremors: New Fiction by Iranian American Writers, co-edited by Anita Amirrezvani; Let Me Tell You Where I've Been: Writing by Women of the Iranian Diaspora; and A World Between: Poems, Short Stories, and Essays by Iranian-Americans, co-edited with Mohammad Mehdi Khorrami. Her own book of poetry, Accidental Architecture, is forthcoming.
Sholeh Wolpé's new book is The Conference of Birds, her translation of Farid Ud-Din Attar's twelfth century epic poem, a classic of Persian literature. Reza Aslan says, "…never before has it been rendered into English with such beauty, elegance, and precision. [Her] translation of this epic is sure to be as timeless as the masterpiece itself." She has also adapted Attar's Sufi mystical allegory of the soul's search for meaning as a play, Conference of Birds, which will be produced at The Ubuntu Theatre Project in Oakland, November 30-December 16, directed by Giulio Perrone. Born in Iran, she is also the author of four books of poems, most recently Keeping Time with Blue Hyacinths, two plays, three books of translation, and three anthologies.