Celebrating over 30 years as an arts organization.


The Center hosts readings, workshops, lectures, and publishes a variety of poetry publications. SPC is located in the R25 Arts Complex located on the corner of R & 25th Streets in midtown Sacramento.



Sacramento Poetry Center memberships support a variety of local poetry programs, publications, readings, and events. Members receive a free subscription to Tule Review and Poetry Now. Please send your check for $30 or more to SPC, 1719 25th St., Sacramento, CA 95816. Fixed incomes are $15.


Sacramento Poetry Center Video Bar

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Saturday, December 08, 2007

Thursday, December 06, 2007

ELENI SIKELIANOS at California State University, Sacramento



Eleni Sikelianos appeared at the the library gallery on the CSUS campus on a wet and rainy December night. She flew into Oakland and arrived at CSUS despite an uncooperative car that nearly found itself on a ventilator near Vacaville.

However, the car demonstrated resolve and sputtered across the Yolo Causeway into Sacramento.

After a little bit of a late start, Sikelianos began her reading with selections from The Book of Jon, a hybrid book of memoir, novel and dream narrative. Then she read selections from her forthcoming untitled manuscript, three of which can be heard here: selections from forthcoming manuscript. [2:08]


Eleni Sikelianos holds an imaginary orange as she demonstrates the bilateral symmetry between the physical world and the ideal world

She fielded questions afterwards ranging from persepctive in The California Poem to whether she considers herself prone to bouts of idealism. Then she signed books and was last seen, dry, headed for Peter Grandbois's night class.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

LORNA DEE CERVANTES and ALFRED ARTEAGA [Dec. 4, 2007]

The crowd was waiting, waiting. We were waiting not so much for Godot as for Cervantes. Lorna Dee had taken the Amtrak into Sacramento from the Bay Area and was looking for a way to get from the train station to 1719 25th Street.

She came into The SPACE while the end of the open mic session was starting. Art Mantecon briskly ushered in the evening by bringing out Francisco Alarcon who provided an invocation of the four directions (five, if you count the direction of the person standing next to you). Despite the fact he was about 180 degrees off, the cardinal directions didn’t seem to mind, and the spirits of the ancestors arrived more or less on time.



Alfred Arteaga started off the evening by reading from his long poem entitled “Frozen Accident.” The section he read from this poem was entitled “Nezahualcoyotl in Mictlan” and told of the great philosopher-king from Texcoco descending into hell (like Dante). Then he read a prose piece dedicated to Ireland entitled “Air,” and finally, he read a poem to an Irish lass he had fancied at one time who had gotten her barbs into him.



Lorna Dee Cervantes started off the evening by reading a piece that was dedicated to poet Phil Goldvarg entitled “For My Ancestors Adobed In the Walls of the Santa Barbara Mission.” Cervantes ended the poem with a resounding “A-men” which had a final “d” tacked on to make it “Amend.” Prior to the recitation of the poem, a Chumash song was chanted by Francisco Dominguez, and the song also followed the end of the poem. During the poem Cervantes shook a gourd rattle so vigorously that one of her earrings must have come off. Several of us scoured the floor after the reading, but we were unable to locate it.

She then read another poem for Phil Goldvarg entitled “Poeta de Pueblo” which was followed up by ten one-line poems to America.

Then she read “The News” and a series of what she called “Play Poems.” Each of these short pieces resulted from exercises in the classroom where a word or phrase is drawn from a hat and the poet has 7 minutes to construct a poem after that. The result is read unedited. Of these poetic equivalents to minute rice, she read “Blind Desert Snakes,” “Night Travelers,” “Allis,” “Movement,” “Tiny,” “Fear of Death,” and “Summer ends Too Soon (a poem about a young Chicana poet who hung herself from a tree at the age of twenty).

Cervantes finished off the evening with “Shelling the Pecans” which ended with “how a woman can rip out the heart whole.” Then there was “Nothing Lasts,” a long meditation on landscape and loss.

SACRAMENTO LITERARY CALENDAR [December 2007]

01 saturday
All are invited to Escritores del Nuevo Sol’s writing
workshop and potluck. 11am. at event will be held
at home of JoAnn Anglin. For directions, call:
916-451-1372 . For info call Graciela Ramirez,
456-5323 or joannpen@comcast.net.
www.escritoresdelnuevosol.com

03 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Alfred
Arteaga and Lorna dee cervantes at The
Space, across the parking lot from HQ for the
Arts. 1719 25th Street. Hosted by Art Mantecon.
7:30pm.

4 tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center,
27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

6 thursday
Poetry Unplugged features TBA at Luna’s Café.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill. Festivities begin at 8pm
and there will be an open mic as well.

7 friday
The Other Voice presents two outstanding Davis
Poets: Katy Brown and Danyen Powell. We
meet from 7:30 to 9:00 in the library of the Davis
Unitarian Universalist Church located at 47074
Patwin Road. Refreshments and open mike follow
so bring along a poem or two to share.

10 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents a reading by
sAndrA Mcpherson. Hosted by Frank Graham.
7:30pm at HQ for the Arts, 1719 25th Street,
Sacramento. Free.

11 tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center,
27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228
Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm Open Mic after.
Bistro 33 in Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F” Street,
3rd and “F” Streets in Davis.

12 Wednesday
Rattlesnake Press presents Patricia
d’Alessandro at The Book Collector, 1008 24th
St., Sacramento, to celebrate the release of her
new chapbook, Metaphoric Intervals From The
Insanity Of Life. Also appearing will be a littlesnake
broadside, Notes From an Ivory Tower, from Ann
Wehrman, plus a new issue of Rattlesnake Review.
Refreshments and a read-around will follow; bring
your own poems or somebody else’s. 7:30-9 PM,
More info: kathykieth@hotmail.com/.
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology Hour, host Andy
Jones, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to podcast
at www.kdvs.org.

14 thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged features TBA. Open mic
before/after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill. 8pm at Luna’s
Café, 1414 16th Street. Free. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com.

15 saturday
Underground Poetry Series features Poets cAndy,
isAAc griffin and Bret Freeman plus open
mic. 7-9pm, $3.00. Underground Books, 2814 35th
Street (35th and Broadway).Hosted by La-Rue’ 916-
737-3333. Plus, a FREE spoken word workshop and
open mic. Learn more about: How to read your poem
effectively, How to market yourself and your work,
and more! www.mybmsf.com/terrymoore

17 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Celtic Women
w/ JeAnine steVens, Brigit sheA truex,
chArLene ungstAd, and others. Hosted by
Rebecca Morrison. HQ for the Arts – 1719 25th
Street. 7:30pm.

18 tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center,
27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

19 Wednesday
Moore time for Poetry, Terry Moore’s Access
Television Show, 9pm, co-host Tyra Moore. Access
Sacramento, Channel 17

20 thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café features
katastrophe from SF - aka rocco kyatatos
- famous international ‘Homo Hop’ star and lyrical
poet. (also a member of the famed original Sister
Spit spoken word group) Plus local Sac wonders
gene Bloom and Barbara Noble. 8pm, Free.

22 saturday
“The Show” Poetry Series features R & B vocalist
Marcia Lewis from Soul II Soul, plus slam
champion from Sacramento he spit fire, and New
York poet tAntrA (www.tantrasmasterwordplay.
com). 7:00 to 9:00pm All ages are welcome. Cost:
$5.00 Note: The Show is on a special date – not
the last Saturday! Wose Community Center Contact:
(916) 208-POET.

24 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center – no reading

25 tuesday
No SPC Poetry Workshop – Merry Christmas! Don’t
bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page poem.

27 thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café. 8pm. Free.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

ZAID SHLAH at Sacramento City College Nov. 29, 2007



Zaid Shlah came to visit the Sacramento City College and talked about his love of Arabic culture, poetry in particular. He read several pieces from his book entitled Taqsim [Frontenac, 2006]. Taqsim are short improvisational pieces played on an oud, and the pieces that Shlah read had a feel of meditations by route of stringed instrument. He explained how the cover of the book was a photograph of a favorite uncle who lived in the north of Iraq near Kirkuk, a man who had dedicated himself to Arabic cultural traditions, in particular to the playing of taqsim. For Shlah, there was no other photograph that evoked the spirit of taqsim more than this one.

He read selections from “Taqsim”, followed by ”Afternoon Confession,” “The Reception,” “Arabic Snow,” “Driving Towards Gethsemane,” “Leaving Iraq, Entering Alberta,” and finally, “Asking Iraq to Comply.”

Shlah answered questions after the reading ranging from personal questions to questions about his work. He talked about his tenuos position as an Iraqi-Canadian who now finds himself in California. He also revealed he enjoyed reading his taqsim to an oud accompaniment like one might experience at a salon in Iraq where the poet and the musician are counterpoints to each other.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

QUINTON DUVAL and LISA DOMINGUEZ ABRAHAM—Nov. 12, 2007



Quinton Duval and Lisa Dominguez Abraham appeared before a packed crowd at the Sacramento Poetry Center that saw several attendees pulling their camping chairs, still there from the previous weekend’s soccer game, out of their trunks in order to get a seat.

Quinton Duval mentioned that he was currently a member of a writing group that had all female members, and he announced that it was the first time he had experienced such a group dynamic since he was once in an all-girl jug band. He jokingly said that he would be reading some pieces from that period in his life.

From his most recent book, Joe’s Rain, he read “Humble Pie,” “Swan,” “Weep,” “Into The Shining Sea,” and “Joe’s Rain.”

Within this set he drew attention to his “lucky postcard from William Wordsworth’s grave” that served as a bookmark. He said he got the idea from John Hawkes, whom Duval had escorted many years before during graduate school. The picture Hawkes kept as talisman was of Faulkner in red riding gear.

He then read a poem that was influenced by his mother who lives in western North Carolina. In the piece he imagined his mother at the stool in her kitchen where she does everything from peeling carrots to talking on the telephone. That image endured through the poem.

Then Duval read some recent poems that will be coming out in the spring from Kathy Kieth’s Rattlesnake Press. There was “Time’s Arrow,” “The Fabulous Future,” “Among Summer Pines,” “Old Friend,” and “Morning Tea.”



Lisa Dominguez Abraham then took to the mic. She read from her new chapbook collection entitled Low Notes. However, the first pieces she read were not from Low Notes. The initial piece was dedicated to the iconic song “Devil with a Blue Dress.” Then she read “Bentley’s Lingerie and Dance Supply,” “Toshiko Kikazu’s Close-Mouthed Vase,” “Christmas Concert.” Then she read from Low Notes: “Rainmakers,” a poem in the voice of a jellyfish, and “On Seeing a Family Cemetery.”

A poem made from lines culled from the evening.

We Descend from Refugees

Into the sea everything goes.
We descend from refugees. Their refrains fitted with wings.

How many songs have you known with pilgrim inside?
Notes chosen over 300 years ago.

Let end note fade into prayer.
I practice every day being still,
a bird in the alluvial scatter.

Do you feel time’s arrow working itself out the other side of you too?
We live a simple life among summer pines.
Random images help keep me upright in the black squeeze:

women anxious to pee and get back up there
the hang of scrotum
(the measurable is where Mrs. Bentley will begin)
that bowl full of blue speckled eggs
that big Q in Bar-B-Q.

Memory is my crew.
Time is different for all of us solitary travelers.

We let the syrup of the day thicken.
Love survives in neon water as well as anything else.

Bury us all on water.
Tell them to bring rope and a sheet of plywood.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

SACRAMENTO LITERARY EVENTS [November]

2 Friday
The Other Voice, sponsored by
the Unitarian Universalist Church
of Davis presents Susan Kelly-
DeWitt. Betty Vlack will be giving
a presentation on our new Poet
Laureate, Donald Hall. The reading
is at 7:30 in the library of the church
located at 27074 Patwin Road.


3 Saturday
All are invited to Escritores del
Nuevo Sol’s writing workshop
and potluck. 11am. at La Raza
Galeria Posada, 1024 22nd Street,
Sacramento. For info call Graciela
Ramirez, 456-5323 or joannpen@
comcast.net. Website: www.
escritoresdelnuevosol.com


5 Monday
SPC presents Do Gentry and
James DenBoer at HQ for the Arts
– 1719 25th Street. Hosted by Art
Mantecon. 7:30pm.


6 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring
15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-
6228


8 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged features TBA at
Luna’s Café. Hosted by Mario Ellis
Hill. Festivities begin at 8pm and
there will be an open mic as well.


11 Sunday
The Pomo Literati radio program
featuring selected pre-recorded
poetic rarites from pre-beat to post
modern and beyond. Live guest
poet/authors. 2pm to 4pm. KUSF
90.3 fm in SF and/or www.kusf.
edu follow the prompts. Hosted
by frank andrick. This episode will
feature performances by William
S. Gainer, Chris Olander, Josh
Fernandez and Neeli Cherkovski.
Pre-recorded rare stuff from Philip
Lamantia, Frank O’Hara, and Patti
Smith (recorded on KUSF). Plus
more collaborative works from The
Germ and frank andrick, and Fari
and friends. Spontaneous stuff.


12 Monday
General meeting of the SPC Board
of Directors meets at HQ for the
Arts - 1719 25th Street – 6:00pm.
All members or interested parties
are invited to attend.
Sacramento Poetry Center presents
a reading by Quinton Duval and
Lisa Dominguez Abraham. Bob
Stanley hosts at HQ for the Arts
– 1719 25th Street. 7:30pm


13 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring
15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-
6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in Historic
Davis City Hall, 226 “F” Street, 3rd
and “F” Streets in Davis. Features: James Ragan


14 Wednesday
Rattlesnake Press presents Taylor
Graham at The Book Collector,
1008 24th St., Sacramento, 7:30-9
PM, to celebrate the release of her
new chapbook, Among Neighbors.
Also appearing: a littlesnake
broadside, Heaven is Where You
Hang Your Wings, from FRANK
ANDRICK, plus a a perpetual
calendar featuring the poetry and
photography of KATY BROWN.
Refreshments and a read-around
will follow; bring your own poems
or somebody else’s. More info:
kathykieth@hotmail.com
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm,
KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to
podcast at www.kdvs.org.


15 Thursday
SPC’s fall reading series at the
Carmichael Library culminates
with a special event featuring
readings by Joshua McKinney
and Kathleen Lynch. 7:30 pm
at Carmichael Library, Marconi
Avenue between Garfield and Fair
Oaks. Free.


Luna’s Poetry Unplugged features
Tim Kahl and Richard Beban. Open mic before/after. Hosted
by Geoffrey Neill. 8pm at Luna’s
Café, 1414 16th Street. Info: 441- 3931 or www.lunascafe.com. Free.


17 Saturday
Jeff Knorr at The Book Collector,
1008 24th St., Sacramento, 7:30PM.
916.442-9295.
“Words, Music, and Motion” An
evening of storytelling, spoken
word, music and dance. Free fam-
ily event at Café Refugio, 1901 Del
Paso Blvd. 6:30pm

Underground Poetry Series presents
Aushanti Pierce, plus a combined
reading of Black Men Expressing
Tour & Black Women Expressing
Tour. plus open mic. 7-9pm, $3.00.
Underground Books, 2814 35th
Street (35th and Broadway).Hosted
by La-Rue’ 916-737-3333


19 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents
a reading by Donald Anderson,
Nikki Quismondo and others
to celebrate the release of Sun
Shadow Mountain, a collection
of poetry, art and photography.
Hosted by Indigo Moor at HQ
for the Arts – 1719 25th Street.
7:30pm.


20 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring
15 - 20 copies of your one-page
poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-
6228


21 Wednesday
Moore time for Poetry: Terry
Moore’s Access Television Show,
9pm, co-host Tyra Moore. Access
Sacramento, Channel 17


22 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café.
8pm. hosted by Frank Andrick.
Free.


24 Saturday
“The Show” Poetry Series: Neo-
soul artist Kevin Sandbloom
comes to town from Los Angeles.
Check out his website at www.
kevinsandbloom.com. 7:00 to
9:00pm All ages are welcome. Cost:
$5.00 Note: The Show is back at
Wose Community Center! Contact:
(916) 208-POET. Saturday,


26 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Brad Buchanan’s CSUS
Creative Writing Class. Tim Kahl
hosts. HQ for the Arts - 1719 25th
Street. 7:30pm


27 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228


28 Wednesday
SPC’s annual benefit at the home
of Mimi and Burnett Miller. Food,
poetry, music, and good cheer.
Readings by Victoria Dalkey and
Quinton Duval. $30 per person
donation to attend. RSVP 979-9706
or come and pay at the door.
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm,
KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to
podcast at www.kdvs.org.


29 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café.
8pm. Free.

A benefit for the Yuba Watershed
Institute: “Peaks, Fires & Spirits of
Love and Loss,” An Evening with
Pulitzer Prize winning poet, Gary
Snyder. The Center for the Arts,
314 West Main St. Grass Valley,
7:30pm.
Admission is $35.00 including
dessert buffet and no host bar.
for tickets call 530-271-700 or
thecenterforthearts.org. For info
contact Tania Carlone, Yuba
Watershed Institute, 530-265-4459
or taniacarlone@sbcglobal.net

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

FRANCISCO REINKING and PHOEBE WAYNE—Oct. 22, 2007

Francisco Reinking and Phoebe Wayne collaborated to provide an evening that was both fun and cerebral, marked by a special high—the moment when those chocolate covered ginger slices from Trader Joe’s were rolled out. For me, the whole evening was an exercise in staving off the dilemma of whether to have the chocolate covered ginger or to have the chocolate covered espresso beans. I’m afraid I lapsed into a few irrational choices.

Francisco Reinking started off the evening by reading a good number of his ethereal short lyrics that juxtaposed juxtaposed gargoyles with call numbers. He read quite a few poems while sitting down.



Phoebe Wayne arrived with her entourage and had a picnic with her family outside of the venue in the HQ for the Arts parking lot where I mistook the whole lot of them for actors on a cigarette break from a rehearsal for a play at California Stage.



Phoebe proceeded to read a poem for two voices entitled “Negotiations for the Mother lode,” “Pink Palace,” “Sequence 12,” and “So,”. Then she reached the animal portion of her reading: “The Kamchatka Bear,” “Why Why Why,” “Various Horses,” and “Spider Season.” She continued with “Sea/Ice,” “Glass and Sash,” “Sequence” and “Ceres.” Then with husband Peter Musselman accompanying her on computer, she read “30 Days Beginning with X,” which was read while a short movie was projected overhead of a driver’s perspective of a car speeding down the road. This was superimposed over a road map with Lost Gulch, among other towns, peeking through the driving action in the foreground.



The open mic featured Adam Burrell whom I had picked out in front of SPC loitering and collared for duty setting up chairs before the reading. He read two poems: one to the promise of youth and the other a reflection on the Virginia Tech shootings. Joshua Clover graciously appeared after taking the train in from Berkeley and read the work of George Stanley, former San Francisco Renaissance poet who moved to Vancouver in the 1970s. He read Stanley’s “Vera Cruz”. The irrepressible Michele Kunnert read two poems. Frank Graham, the editor of Poetry Now, read poems dedicated to the Iraqi children, to the people who made Little League, to night birds, and finally to cognitive therapy. Joe Atkins, arriving without even a poem in his pocket (how sad!), picked up a copy of Cole Swensen’s It’s Like You Never Left published by Ibis Press in 1983 off of the SPC shelf and resourcefully read a short piece from that book.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

NOV 16 | Proust as Prompt | Weekend Writing Intensive




Weekend goal: To bring participants into the literary world (Proust’s world) of time, symbol, dream, memory and personal myth -- an author-guided tour to your own best and most authentic writing.

Lawrence Spann will facilitate a weekend writing intensive sponsored by the UC Davis Cancer Center’s Outreach Research and Education Program as part of its “Writing as Healing” project, Friday November 16 evening through Sunday November 18, 2007 in the Facilities Support Services Building, 4800 2nd Ave, on the UC Davis Health System campus in Sacramento.

Dr. Spann founded the Literature, Arts and Medicine Program in Sacramento. Group members write to a prompt, but are not limited to it, and read what they write to the group on a voluntary basis.

All writing is treated as fiction and is confidential. All comments are positive and uplifting. Dr. Spann writes and reads with the group and comments from a literary perspective. Literary figures will be integrated throughout the weekend with handouts and explanations.

Register by calling or sending an email to
Patti Robinson, 916-734-0823 or
patricia.robinson@ucdmc.ucdavis.edu
For more information, call Patti (916-734-
0823) or Marlene von Friederichs-Fitzwater,
Ph.D., Director, Outreach Research &
Education Program, UC Davis Cancer
Center (916-734-8810)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

CHAD SWEENEY and VIOLA WEINBERG Oct. 15, 2007




Chad Sweeney read a number of pieces from his forthcoming book from Anhinga Press out of Tallahassee entitled Arranging the Blaze set to appear in 2009. His ghost armed itself with an incantatory style that put a hex on my camera. Or perhaps it was the flurry of his word stylings that were too fast to capture in The Space’s dark room. Nevertheless, the visage of Mr. Sweeney appeared and read fhis ine poems where in one piece the words of great texts were thrown at a bear. He read a poem where he tried to reinvent the word “is” in English so that it would not appear so static. Miraculously, he seemed to apply this word to himself as slowly, his outline transformed into smoke and then a man wearing a red flannel shirt and then into the vapor of cough spray. Or was it a shy perfume?



Viola Weinberg read from her new collection entitled Letters to Pablo Neruda. The book was comprised of selected epistolary poems (letters as poems) that Weinberg has written to the imagined spectre of Pablo Neruda, who has been looming over her darkest and brightest days for 25 years. The book is a search for the old great poet as muse, as sounding board for what has transpired in Weinberg’s life. Neruda has been accompanying Weinberg to her most private spaces and out on the open road in New Mexico among the burros in a burro sanctuary, even to beautiful Raley Field here in Sacramento. The results speak for themselves. Weinberg speaks frankly to Neruda as muse, bouncing her reflections off of him as she places Neruda between herself and the world. Neruda takes on the role of shadow presence and confessor for Weinberg as she yearns for Neruda frequently enough to forge her fantasy into a physical presence. He could almost serve as tour guide for her bed. Neruda has served as a guide for Weinberg through her writing life as she has seen many of her writer friends succumb to the pressures of "real" life. For her, Neruda has been the guide to the straight and narrow of her life as a writer. neruda is the companion that haunts her when she strays from her endeavor to write (imagine that!—a muse as a disciplinarian). Yet perhaps the word haunt is not quite the right word for how Neruda has invited himself into Weinberg's life, but it is a crude approximation for a houseguest who stays for 25 years and won't go away.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

October Literary Events in Sacramento

October Literary Events for Sacramento

1 Monday
Art Mantecon hosts at SPC – Iven
Lourie, Kirsten Casey and Scott
Young — three of the Six Sierra Poets
who have published Yuba Flows, a
new anthology from Hip Pocket Press.
7:30pm.


2 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart
Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20
copies of your one-page poem. Info:
Danyen, (530) 756-6228


3 Wednesday
Poems-For-All is pleased to present
James DenBoer reading from his
book “Stonework: Selected Poems”
published this month (Sept. 2007) by
Sandy McPherson’s Swan Scythe
Press. Poems-For-All Chaplettes
of Mr. DenBoer’s work will be
dispensed. 7:30pm. The Book
Collector, 1008 24th Street (between
J & K Streets.) 442-9295.
www.poems-for-all.com


4 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged. Luna’s Café.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill. Festivities
begin at 8pm and there will be an
open mic as well.


6 Saturday
All are invited to Escritores del Nuevo
Sol’s writing workshop and potluck.
11am. at La Raza Galeria Posada,
1024 22nd Street, Sacramento. For
info call Graciela Ramirez, 456-5323
or joannpen@comcast.net. Website:
www.escritoresdelnuevosol.com


8 Monday
General meeting of the SPC Board of
Directors meets at HQ for the Arts -
1719 25th Street – 6:00pm. All
members or interested parties are
invited to attend.
Readings by Nina Lindsey and Helen
Wickes. Bob Stanley hosts at HQ
for the Arts, 1719 25th Street. 7:30pm


9 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart
Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20
copies of your one-page poem. Info:
Danyen, (530) 756-6228
Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in Historic
Davis City Hall, 226 “F” Street, 3rd
and “F” Streets in Davis.


Wednesday 10
Rattlesnake Press will celebrate
Sacramento Poetry Month by
presenting Placerville poet Kate Wells
at The Book Collector, 1008 24th St.,
Sacramento, from 7:30-9 PM to
celebrate the release of her new
chapbook, Spiral. Also released: a
broadside from Mary Field, plus #5 in
the new Rattlesnake Interview Series
featuring Julia Connor, as well as
the first of the new interview
anthologies. Refreshments and a
read-around will follow; bring your own
poems or somebody else’s. More info:
kathykieth@hotmail.com
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm, KDVS-
90.3 FM or subscribe to podcast at
www.kdvs.org


11 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged. Open mic
before/after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th Street.
Info: 441-3931 or www.lunascafe.com.
Free.


12 Friday
The Escritores del Nuevo Sol/Writers
of the New Sun, join with the Zapatista
Coalition on el Dia de la Raza, for the
annual remembrance of Chicano poet
Phil Goldvarg. 6 pm contact
Graciela Ramirez, 916-456-5323.
www.escritoresdelnuevosol.com


15 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents
Viola Weinberg at The Space—
25th & R Streets. Indigo Moor hosts.


16 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart
Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20
copies of your one-page poem. Info:
Danyen, (530) 756-6228


17 Wednesday
Moore time for Poetry: Terry Moore’s
Access Television Show, 9pm, co-host
Tyra Moore. Access Sacramento,
Channel 17


18 Thursday
SPC’s reading series at the Carmichael
Library resumes with Bill Pieper,
John Bell, and Jill Stockinger.
7:30 pm at Carmichael Library, Marconi
Avenue between Garfield and Fair
Oaks. Free.
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café.
8pm. hosted by Frank Andrick. Free.


20 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series presents
Lori Jean Robinson, Random
Abiladeaze, and Taifa Jamari, plus
open mic. 7-9pm, $3.00. Underground
Books, 2814 35th Street (35th and
Broadway).Hosted by La-Rue’


22 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents
Phoebe Wayne, Francisco
Reinking and other UC Davis creative
writing grads. Tim Kahl hosts. HQ for
the Arts, 1719 25th Street. 7:30pm
23 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart
Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20
copies of your one-page poem. Info:
Danyen, (530) 756-6228
24 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm, KDVS-
90.3 FM or subscribe to podcast at
www.kdvs.org.


25 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café.
8pm. Free.


26 Friday
Dia de los Muertos/Day of the
Dead The Escritores del Nuevo Sol/
Writers of the New Sun offer poetry
and music for this annual Mexican-
originated celebration, brought to the
US by the Chicano movement, and
which has become a meaningful time
of remembrance for people of many
backgrounds to honor with joy those
who have passed from their earthly
life. This is one of a week’s full of
activities coordinated by La Raza
Galeria Posada. Cost: $5 or free-will
donation as you can afford. 7:30 pm
contact Graciela Ramirez, 916-456-
5323. www.escritoresdelnuevosol.com


27 Saturday
“The Show” Poetry Series: Inter-
national Slam Champion Talaam
Acey —www.talaamacey.com—
comes to town from Baltimore. 7 to
9pm. All ages are welcome. $5.00
Note: This event will be held at the
Guild Theater - 2828 35th Street (at
Broadway) not at Wose Community
Center! Contact: (916) 208-POET.


29 Monday
Frank Graham hosts a Halloween
reading at HQ for the Arts with the
Ghastly Ghouls of SPC’s Tuesday
Night Workshop. 7:30pm


30 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart
Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20
copies of your one-page poem. Info:
Danyen, (530) 756-6228

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

JEFF KNORR and DAVID ALPAUGH 9/24/2007

David Alpaugh and Jeff Knorr took their place in front of a packed venue at SPC on Sept. 24, 2007.



Jeff started the evening and read mostly selections from his new book “The Third Body.” However, he started the evening off reading a new basketball poem entitled “Tuesday at the Y.” Then he proceeded to read: “Under a Brick Orange Moon,” “Waiting on Family Court,” “The First Time We Lost Our Son,” “Winter Turkeys,” “Lesson in Love and Evolution off of Highway 99,” [Click here for audio][2:53] “Morning Swim,” [Click here for audio][2:11]“Worship,” and “Openings.”



David Alpaugh then took his place behind the podium and explained that the poem alluded to in his introduction, namely “Postmodern Buttocks of Apollo,” was described in recent review of his book as “the ultimate in shaped poems.”

David’s pieces ranged in tone from the emotionally serious to the political to the insightful, but mostly they were poems that were musings on his contemporary era and his past. This makes him a good reader to pair with almost anyone: Dr. Seuss, Allen Ginsberg or Richard Wilbur.

He read strictly from his newest book Heavy Lifting: “Footage,” “Pivotal Question,” “ Heavy Lifting,” “Losing Control of the Toad,” [Click here for audio][2:18] “What My Father Loved About Melmac,” “A Distant Sunder,” “War and White Wine,” “Power Trip,” “Statement,” “Deconstruction,” [Click here for audio][2:42] “Lipstick,”Who Says Poetry Makes Nothing Happen,” “Hamlet’s Lullaby, and “Sweet Nothing.” [Click here for audio][3:13]

He even survived an accusation of being the George Carlin of poetry.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Laverne Frith—9/10/2007



Laverne Frith, one of Sacramento’s mainstays, spent the evening reading many of his fine short, tight poems. The poems in the first half of the reading were intensely focused on nature. They were still lifes and landscapes brought to the page. Working through a sinus problem, he commented that he hoped his poems in the chapbook had in some way a relationship to light. He hoped that, like light, they would meld together in a meaningful way.

The second half of the reading featured poems from Laverne’s newest chapbook entitled Drinking the Light. These poems ranged from meditations on art to ruminations on the death of a close friend.

The first half included titles, such as “Overflight,” “Over the Rice Fields,” “Lightning Over Albuquerque,” “In the Bottlebrush,” “If Only Mary Oliver Here,” “Desert Signatures,” “In the Shadow of the Blue Heron,” “The Beach,” “The Range of Burning,” “The Cracked Desert,” “After a Western Sunset,” “Steel,” “Drifting back to The Bottomlands while reading Li Po,” and “The Way the Fall Dies.”

Over The Rice Fields

Watch as the shorebirds fly in formation,
a white squadron wheeling in the wind.

They bank right and dip as they shadow
the targeted fields. So many decisions

that follow will be independent, as if
landing brings individual freedom

for a spell—their foragings taken at will —
protracted for as long

as the grain will last. After all,
this is not really about rice;

this is not really about flight;
this is not really about birds.

In the second half Laverne switched to reading rangier poems that reflected his interest in the creative process of capturing life within a frame like in painting and photographs. He read “My Best Friend is Blind and Dying,” “Toward Clarity: The Power of Contrast,” “Yosemite Crossing,” “An Artist’s Portrait (for Jim Leitszell)” “Cloud Rhythms, Lenticular,” “White Arachnid,” “Spirit Moth,” “Setting the Stage (after a photograph),” “Mosaic,” “Arrival Of the Normandy train at the Gere Saint-Larane (After a Painting by Monet),” “My Cats Love Bartok,” “Somewhere in Vienna,” “Drinking the Light,”Cafe Concert (after a painting by Georges Seurat)” and “Dream Dancing.”

From these the audience learned what animates and depresses Laverne’s cats: “My Cats Love Bartok. but they become morose at any hint of Wagner . . . We find them at the appointed hour blissfully engaged, clearly engrossed with Bartok.”

And now for something completely different. Hoping for them to meld together (like light) in a meaningful way, lines gleaned from the poems read by Laverne during the evening are forged into a poem-collage:

Soft Song

Such is the nature of bees,
hoping in the dark there will be a soft landing,
transforming a bright red madness.

The salamander’s heart would sing.
Already prepared for the soundings of the night.
A gentle rise and fall of vernals we can never forget.

All that is left is scrolls on empty tortoise shells.
The frogs are audible in their longing.
Even the heron’s call is beginning to sound the dread.

Outreach of hand, sadness of hand.
If Li Po were here,
he would speak to the anxieties of squirrels.

You never know how the artist’s eyes will divide you.

After an observation of mannequins,
we find them at the appointed hour, blissfully engaged,
beginning to glow in virgin eyes.

But light will not go beyond its limits,
how it lives and how it always dies.
Who knows where the shadowing will end?

Erratic loopings and zitherings,
bees drawn to endless nectar.
Let them hear your soft song.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

September Literary Events

September/October Literary Events for Sacramento

1 Saturday
All are invited to Escritores del Nuevo Sol’s writing workshop and potluck. 11am. at La Raza Galeria Posada, 1024 22nd Street, Sacramento. For info call Graciela Ramirez, 456-5323 or joannpen@comcast.net .

3 Monday
No reading at HQ for the Arts

4 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

5 Wednesday
Luna’s Café presents a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the publication of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road.
B.L. Kennedy will host an evening of readings from Kerouac by Matt Amott, Todd Cirillo, Josh Fernandez, Patrick Grizzell, Robert Grossklaus, Megan, Jackie Schaffer, D.R. Wagner and Terryl Wheat. Doors open at 7pm – Reading from 7:30 to 11:00

6 Thursdya – Poetry Unplugged features TBA at Luna’s Café. Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill. Festivities begin at 8pm and there will be an open mic as well.

10 Monday
General meeting SPC Board of Directors meets at HQ for the Arts - 1719 25th Street – 5:45pm. All members or interested parties are invited to attend.

Sacramento Poetry Center presents Laverne Frith reading from his work
at HQ for the Arts - 1719 25th Street.

11 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

12 Wednesday
Rattlesnake Press will present Sacramento Poet SUSAN KELLY-DEWITT at The Book Collector, 1008 24th St., Sacramento, on Wednesday, September 12 from 7:30-9 PM to celebrate the release of her new chapbook, Cassiopeia Above the Banyan Tree. Also released that night will be a littlesnake broadside from Sacramento Poet DAWN DIBARTOLO (“Blush”), plus #4 in the new Rattlesnake Interview Series by B.L. KENNEDY, this one featuring FRANK ANDRICK, and a brand-new issue of Rattlesnake Review (#15)! Refreshments and a read-around will follow; bring your own poems or somebody else's. More info:
kathykieth@hotmail.com

Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to podcast at www.kdvs.org.

13 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged features TBA. Open mic before/after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill. 8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th Street. Info: 441-3931 or www.lunascafe.com. Free.

14 Friday
Annual all-Spanish poetry reading, featuring the work of the controversial Spanish poet Rafael Alberti, and the students of the Sac State Foreign Languages Dept. Emcee is Dr. Fausto Avendaño, Contributing to the evening will be Graciela Ramirez, Jim Michael, and musician/composer Alfredo González.
Open mic to follow. 7:30 pm. Cost: $5 or as you can afford.

15 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series plus open mic.
7-9pm, $3.00. Underground Books, 2814 35th Street (35th and Broadway).Hosted by La-Rue’

17 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents hosted by Rebecca Morrison
at HQ for the Arts - 1719 25th Street.

18 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F” Street, 3rd and “F” Streets in Davis.

19 Wednesday
Moore time for Poetry: Terry Moore’s Access Television Show, 9pm, co-host Tyra Moore. Access Sacramento, Channel 17

20 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Café. 8pm. hosted by Frank Andrick. Free.

22 Saturday
9 Muses plus One – An evening of Poetry, Story, Prose, Drama, Film, Celebration and the Impossible – featuring 9 women – Michelle Tea, Beth Lisick, Tara Jepsen, Barbara Noble, Rachel Leibrock, Rachel Gregg, Rachel Savage, Terryll Wheat, and Tessa - plus Gilberto Rodriguez.
Hosted by Frank Andrick at Luna’s Café. $10 at the door. Funded by a grant from Poets and Writers.

24 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Jeff Knorr and David Alpaugh. Tim Kahl hosts.
at HQ for the Arts - 1719 25th Street.

25 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm, Hart Senior Center, 27th & J. Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-page poem. Info: Danyen, (530) 756-6228

26 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology Hour, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or www.kdvs.org.

27 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s.

29 Saturday
“The Show” Poetry Series. 9 pm at Wo'se Community Center (Off 35th and Broadway), 2863 35th Street, Sac; $5.00. Info: T.Mo at (916) 455-POET.

Monday, August 27, 2007

LUKE WARM WATER—8/27/07



Luke Warm Water brought his mixture of Sherman Alexie meets Charles Bukowski meets Tom Waits to the Sacramento Poetry Center. With Asylum Gallery's altar show going on, it was almost as though Luke was undergoing a religious conversion. One moment he might have seemed Catholic, the next he might have seemed Aztec.

He read from Iktomi's Uprising [2007] and from his previous book On Indian Time [2005] to an intimate crowd. His story-poems told of his life growing up in Rapid City, South Dakota and his subsequent travels around the globe.
His characters, like Iktomi, the Lakota trickster figure of a spider, spoke of troubled souls and souls still trying to make good on their promises. There were tales of lost Halloween by kids in Fat Albert costumes, tales of down-on-their-luck welfare mothers whose hospitality runs over into the next morning , the tale of Ishi's eventual demise.

There was also this Sacramento tale from his latest book.

Not Your Average Sacramento Mother's Day

While his home is empty in the suburbs
symptoms of yet another spousal spat
wife and kids out of town visiting her family
on this her special day of motherly recognition
his afternoon sitting at a downtown watering hole
among the bikers shooting pool
listening to the out of shape middle aged
dishwater blonde bartender
complain about her co-worker bartender
to an older black woman dressed in sunhat
wensible shoes with long pink dress to match
the Dodgers are playing the Giants on the TV
that hangs from the wall behind the bar
he grows weary of it all
leaving after the first beer
driving in the general direction toward home
stopping at an Auburn Blvd. strip club
no cover charge gets you expensive beer prices
it is dark and cool inside
from afternoon 100+ degree sun heat
he hangs back by the bar
far away from the stage
so dancers do not mistake him with money
and wanting to sit in his lap
leery of his t-shirt and khaki shorts
being perfumed up
this would send his wife into a rage worthy of divorce
sagging out of shape asses
and flabby thighs puffing out of tight panties
grace his temporary runaway dog existence
the Dodgers are still playing the Giants
on the TV hanging off the wall at the end of the bat
his inner eye wanders to thoughts
weighing his own life's strikeouts and base hits
before walking out after only one beer
driving to the safety of his suburbia consulate
with a six pack of cheap beer
he tips the dnacer on stage
who is the oldest most overweight weathered one of them all
dancing to a song by Rage Against The Machine
laying at her high heel feet
a 20 dollar bill
wishing her a happy Mother's Day


Luke signed books and made his way into the night back to Antelope where he waits for the deer-like figure to turn into a trickster.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

BRANDON CESMAT—LIVE at HQ for the Arts



Brandon Cesmat sailed into town after a nice long hike with his cousin in the morning in the Sierras. He arrived, donning his Ovation guitar and gourd rattle, and he plugged his tape loop machine into the PA. We were set. All that was needed was an audience.

Apparently, only Susan and Joe Finkelman, Rebecca Morrison, Frank Graham, and Michele Kunnert have heard that the Sacramento Poetry Center NOW HAS AIR CONDITIONING!

But Brandon persevered and went on to give this small audience the ride of its life. He bounced from singing vocalese songs ( a poem entitled “So What” that usurped the melody of Miles Davis’s “So What” complete with harmonized backing vocals as provided by the tape loop machine) to more plaintive and soulful pieces like “the Long Pass” to political-historical romps like “Testosterone Poisoning: A Male Problem.” All from memory.



After “So What” Cesmat launched into a short poem entitled “God Song” whose lyrics were set to a John Coltrane tune. Between stanzas Cesmat improvised on vocal trumpet.

Cesmat then explained about the Santa Ana winds of southern California and read “Santa Ana.” He explained how the poem had become a song after the windswept Paradise Flats fires blew past his house. He jumped in his car, and began thinking about this poem a little more concertedly.

“Where Was Fidel When I Needed Him” ruminated on the story of Elian Gonzalez, and Cesmat took issue with Fidel Castro’s absence when his own father was less than present, his grandfather singing him to sleep instead. Listen to it here [2:22].

Turning to the issue of the night, a culture obsessed with violence, Cesmat endeavored to show the softer side of American football with “The Long Pass,” reaching near epiphanic heights on the gridiron. “Why aren’t there more football poems?” he asked. Why do baseball and boxing garner so much literary attention?

“Testosterone Poisoning: a Male Problem” asked whether it might be better for men to sacrifice one of their testicles in the humanity but worried that too many might sacrifice the wrong one and end up like Hitler.

A newer piece that is not featured in Cesmat’s Driven Into the Shade were next. One entitled “Night Classes” was about the struggles of students who try to balance difficult and busy lives alongside of personal habits that many might not find so admirable.

“Park” features a speaker projecting himself as a car and driving between the people he meets at his class reunion. Such a speaker muses about his place in the world without a garage in the outskirts to return to.

“The Conference” referred to advice given at a writing conference and what it might mean to a poet who puts as much emphasis on putting a poem out into the airwaves as on paper.

Cesmat turned political in “In the Memory Market,” where a shopper is choosing among various different atrocities and brutality that has been perpetrated in the name of maintaining power. Only at the end do we learn that the shop’s proprietor who is keeping his wares on the shelves is really ourselves.

“Lightning, All Directions” is the tale of love in an observatory. (Listen here [1:18])

“The Song of Enough” (Listen here [4:09]) and “Ice Drum” (Listen here [3:01]) rounded out the evening, followed by a form poem ,“The Compassionate Conservative Blues,” a snarky homage to good intentions gone awry.

After forty-five minutes of frivolity and sobriety, Cesmat headed back to his San Diego home, and Sacramento’s small but devoted audience, spirits lifted by a man with a vision of how music can be the tendril wrapped around poetry, was greeted by a very cool and comfortable evening.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

BEN HIATT [1942-2007]



Ben Hiatt
January 29, 1942-June 16, 2007

Ben died June 16 with his wife and sons at his side. There was no service.

To borrow from the bio on Rooting For the Rooster (Rattlesnake Press, 2005), Ben’s last chapbook :

He began publishing his original poetry in 1958 at the age of 16. He has now published poetry in six different decades, including somewhere around 30 books and chapbooks of poetry and one collection of stories and essays, The View From Mt. Aukum. He has received several literary awards, including a National Endowment for the Arts Cash Award in 1970 as one of “America’s Most Promising Younger Poets”. In 1972, he was listed in Who’s Who in America.

During the early and mid-‘60’s, Ben Hiatt was an integral part of the “Mimeo Revolution” in small press publishing. In the late ‘60’s and early ‘70’s he was a pioneer in what was to later become known as “Typewriter Offset” publishing. He was also an influential editor/publisher who published several literary magazines, including The Grande Ronde Review, Seared Eye, Nimbus Basin, Sacramento Poetry Express, The Mt. Aukum Review, The Hangtown Fry, and The Mountain Trader, a general-interest regional monthly magazine.

Over the years, Ben has designed, printed and bound scores of books by other poets and writers under several imprints, including Grande Ronde Press, Island City Press, The Sacramento Poetry Exchange, and Mt. Aukum Press.

Ben Hiatt also worked with California Poets in the Schools for fifteen years, teaching poetry writing to students in all grades from kindergarten to high school.

Ben was a truly memorable man. In the words of Ben’s old friend, Annie Menebroker:

Ben was a loveable and difficult personality and upon hearing he was gone, a whole community did the wave of sorrow.

Poems by Ben Hiatt

Spring
Wise Child
Dealer's Choice

Friday, July 20, 2007

JULY 28 | The Poetry of Charles Baudelaire


Sacramento Literary Events for July/August

9 Monday
SPC Board of Directors meets at
Carmichael Library, 5605 Marconi
Avenue. 5:45-7:00pm.
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Catherine French. 7:30
pm at Carmichael Library, 5605
Marconi Avenue. Bob Stanley
and Indigo Moor host.

10 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F”
Street, 3rd and “F” Streets in
Davis.

11 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm,
KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to
podcast at www.kdvs.org.

12 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged
features TBA. Open mic before/
after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

15 Sunday
Third Sunday Writing Group.
Free creative writing workshop.
10th & U, Sacramento.
Contact Nancy Walker for more
information @
oolalaparee03@yahoo.com

16 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Cache Creek Nature
Preserve Writers. 7:30 pm at HQ
for the Arts, 1719 25th Street.
Rebecca Morrison hosts.

17 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228.

The Moore Time for Poetry TV
series presents Pastor Alonzo
Morris and choir plus R & B artist
Willie Whitl. Cablecast on
channel 17, Comcast Cable @
5:00 am.

19 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged
features TBA. Open mic before/
after. Hosted by frank andrick.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

21 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series.
Open mic. 7-9pm, $3.00.
Featuring TBA. Underground
Books, 2814 35th Street (35th
and Broadway. Hosted by Terry
Moore. www.terrymoore.info)

23 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center in
collaboration with Alliance
Francaise to help celebrate the
French Film Festival July 20-29.
Hors d’oevres and visual
entertainment. After the
freatured readers, please join the
open mic and read poems in
French, in translation or about
France. 7:30 pm at HQ for the
Arts, 1719 25th Street. Rebecca
Morrison hosts.

24 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F”
Street, 3rd and “F” Streets in
Davis.

25 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology
Hour, host Andy Jones, 5pm,
KDVS-90.3 FM or subscribe to
podcast at www.kdvs.org.

27 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged features
TBA. Open mic before/after.
Hosted by B.L. Kennedy. 8pm at
Luna’s Café, 1414 16th Street.
Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

28 Saturday
“The Show” Poetry Series. 9 pm
at Wo’se Community Center (Off
35th and Broadway), 2863 35th
Street, Sacramento. $5.00. Info:
T.Mo at (916) 455-POET.

August 2007
2 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged features TBA.
1414 16th Street. Info: 441-3931
or www.lunascafe.com. Free.
Festivities begin at 8pm and
there will be an open mic as well.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill.

5 Sunday
PoemSpirits featuring guest
reader TBA .Free and open to
the public; open mic, light
refreshments provided. Bring a
favorite poem to share, yours or
another’s. Location: UUSS, 2425
Sierra Blvd., Sacramento, CA
95825: www.uuss.org. Contact:
Tom Goff or Nora Staklis: 916-
481-3312, or JoAnn Anglin: 916-
451-1372.

6 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents (tentative). 7:30 pm at
HQ for the Arts, 1719 25th Street.
Bob Stanley hosts.

7 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

The Moore Time for Poetry TV
series presents poet Nikki Skies
from Los Angeles. Cablecast on
channel 17, Comcast Cable @
5:00 am.

8 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and
Technology Hour, host Andy
Jones, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or
subscribe to podcast at
www.kdvs.org.

9 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged
features TBA. Open mic before/
after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

13 Monday
SPC Board of Directors meets at
Carmichael Library, 5605
Marconi Avenue. – 5:45-7:00pm.
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Stan Zumbiel. 7:30 pm
at Carmichael Library, 5605
Marconi Avenue. Bob Stanley
and Indigo Moor host.

14 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F”
Street, 3rd and “F” Streets in
Davis.

16 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged
features TBA. Open mic before/
after. Hosted by frank andrick.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

18 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series.
Open mic. 7-9pm, $3.00.
Featuring TBA. Underground
Books, 2814 35th Street

23 Thursday - 8 p.m. - Kelly Richardson and April Jenkins read plus open mic. Poetry Unplugged at Luna's, 1414 16th Street. Hosted by b. l. k. Free. http://www.lunascafe.com, 916-441-3931.

25 Saturday - 7-9 p.m. The Show presents poets Michael Guinn from Texas, Frank Andrick, Simoetry, Cleo Cartel and The Forgotten One, at the Wo'se Community Center, 2863 35th Street (off 35th and Broadway across from the parking lot). For vendor or event information please call T. Mo at (916) 208-POET. "The Show" is every last Saturday of the month. $5. This is a family event. "The BEST SHOW IN TOWN with an Open Mic, Top Notch Features and Live Band LSB." Sponsored by the FREEDOM EQUITY GROUP. Click here

27 Monday - 7:30 p.m. - Luke Warm Water reads at at SPC, 25th and R. Free. 916-979-9706. Open mic.

28 Tuesday - 8 p.m. TBA reads plus open mic at The Bistro, 3rd and F Streets in Davis, 2nd and 4th Tuesdays. Free. http://www.bistro33.com/bistro33_davis 530-756-4556 or aojones@ucdavis.edu

30 Thursday - 8 p.m. - Josh Fernandez reads plus open mic. Poetry Unplugged at Luna's, 1414 16th Street. Hosted by franc andrick. Free. http://www.lunascafe.com, 916-441-3931.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Hardpan: A Journal of Poetry Reading



Entering into the starkness of the SPC cave (or was this just a Dadaist display?), the contributors to Hardpan Magazine, Modesto’s newest entry into the literary scene, took their place in front of the podium. They were joined there by the Hardpan editors (Gordon Preston, debee loyd, and Karen Baker).

Gordon Preston announced the readers one by one as they came up to read fromthe issue of Hardpan where their work appeared. Leading things off was henry7 reneau, who rode up on his bicycle just before things got under way. He read ‘homicidal in freedomland,” and “seven days in oz.” Then Karen Baker (not pictured) read “incidental food.” Next up was Brad Buchanan who appeared to be in a “fighting mood” when he read “Spilled Milk.” Toby Bielawski read a tribute to Annie Dillard entitled “Thinking of Tinker Creek.” Quinton Duval read his tribute to irrepressible longing in The Valley entitled “Lonely Vistas.” Josh Fernandez read “Bluebird,” a poem he had recently written.



Lynn Hansen continued by reading “Spadefoot” and “Gravel Ghost.” debee loyd read “The Game” and two other short pieces, “soil” and “i rise”. Mark Nicoll-Johnson read “3 Highways” dedicated to 99, 108, and 120 that run through The Valley. [He also related a terrific anecdote about Maya Angelou after the reading.] William O’ Daly read “Our Names Returning After Rain” and Tom Portwood read “I Am Andersonville.” Finally, Stephen Sadler read “Anticipating the End of Summer” and “Regression.”

Of course, Hardpan is always looking for submissions, and you can submit for issue four until Sept. 1 to hardpanpoetry@sbcglobal.net. Of course, it might be nice to query wih an e-mail for guidelines first.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Sacramento Literary Events [June]

June 2007 Literary Events for Sacramento

3 Sunday
PoemSpirits featuring guest reader TBA.
Free and open to the public; open mic and
light refreshments provided. Bring a poem to share,
yours or another's. Location: 2425 Sierra Blvd.
Contact: Tom Goff or Nora Staklis: 916-481-3312, or
JoAnn Anglin: 916-451-1372. uuss.org

4 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Robbie Grossklaus,
Jackie Schaeffer, and Bill Carr with Miles Miniaci and his band Litany.
7:30 pm at HQ for the Arts. 1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Bob Stanley.

5 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop.
7:30 pm, Hart Senior Center @ 27th & J.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.
Info: Danyen 530-756-6228.

The Moore Time for Poetry TV series presents poet Nikki Skies
from Los Angeles. Cablecast on channel 17, Comcast Cable @ 5 am.

UC Davis Creative Writing Program Reading Series presents
award-winning novelist and short story writer Molly Giles.
Molly was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for her
first book, Rough Translations.
126 Voorhies Hall, UC Davis Campus, 1st & A Streets, Davis.

7 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged features TBA.
1414 16th Street. Info: 916-441-3931 or lunascafe.com.
Free. Festivities begin at 8 pm; open mic also.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill.

11 Monday
SPC Board of Directors meets at HQ for the Arts.
1719 25th Street. 5:45-7 pm.

Sacramento Poetry Center presents Jan Haag and Sue Staats.
(note: reading at Carmichael Library--5605 Marconi Ave., Carmichael).
7:30 pm. Bob Stanley and Indigo Moor host.

12 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop.
7:30 pm, Hart Senior Center @ 27th & J.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.
Info: Danyen 530-756-6228.

Bistro 33 Poetry Series.
Presents: Joshua Clover
8:30 pm. Open mic after.
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 "F" Street, Davis.

13 Wednesday
Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour.
Host Andy Jones. 5 pm, KDVS-90.3 FM
or subscribe to podcast at kdvs.org

14 Thursday
Luna's Poetry Unplugged features TBA. Open mic before/after.
Hosted by Geoffrey Neill. 8pm @ Luna's Cafe, 1414 16th Street.
Info: 441-3931 or lunascafe.com. Free.

16 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series. Open mic. 7-9 pm. $3.00
Featuring Glen Stovall & The Stovall Singers and Black Men
Expressing Love poem tour.
Underground Books, 2814 35th Street.
Hosted by Terry Moore. terrymoore.info.

17 Sunday
Third Sunday Writing Group.
Free creative writing workshop.
10th & U Street. Contact Nancy Walker for more info. @
oolalaparee03@yahoo.com

18 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Luke Breit and Jose Montoya.
7:30 pm at HQ for the Arts. 1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Frank Graham.

19 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop.
7:30 pm, Hart Senior Center @ 27th & J.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.
Info: Danyen 530-756-6228.

The Moore Time for Poetry TV series presents Pastor Alonzo Morris and choir
plus R & B artist Willie Whitl. Cablecast on channel 17, Comcast Cable @ 5 am.

21 Thursday
Luna's Poetry Unplugged features TBA. Open mic before/after.
Hosted by frank andrick. 8pm @ Luna's Cafe, 1414 16th Street.
Info: 441-3931 or lunascafe.com. Free.

25 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center presents Hardpan Magazine reading with
debee loyd, Gordon Preston, Karen Baker et al.
7:30 pm at HQ for the Arts. 1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Tim Kahl.

26 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop.
7:30 pm, Hart Senior Center @ 27th & J.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.

Bistro 33 Poetry Series.
[On Hold until fall]
8:30 pm. Open mic after.
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 "F" Street, Davis.

27 Wednesday
Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour.
Host Andy Jones. 5 pm, KDVS-90.3 FM
or subscribe to podcast at kdvs.org

28 Thursday
Luna's Poetry Unplugged features TBA. Open mic before/after.
Hosted by B.L. Kennedy. 8pm @ Luna's Cafe, 1414 16th Street.
lunascafe.com. Free.

30 Saturday
"The Show" Poetry Series. 9 pm @ Wo'se Community Center--2863 35th Street.
$5.00. Info.: T.Mo @ 916-455-POET,

Sunday, May 27, 2007

JULIA CONNOR at SACRAMENTO CITY COLLEGE



Julia Connor arrived at Sacramento City College in Lillard Hall and planted herself among the red chairs there like a gentian among the geraniums.

Connor, who is currently Sacramento's Poet Laureate but who has also taught at Naropa and studied with Robert Duncan, kicked things off by reading from “Making the Good,”her first attempt to put together a collection. Connor shared that, looking back, maybe she wasn’t ready to put a collection together at that point but that she was nevertheless delighted to be asked to do so. The poem she read was called “Epiphany” and it invoked the image of a risen scorpion, which according to the tenets of alchemy is the eagle.

From the same collection, she read “The Place of Dark Blue Flowers.”

She then read a section from a book called “Canto for the Birds,” whose origin was a zigzagging trip through the Sacramento Valley to Arizona with her husband. They were accompanied on that trip by a book Connor had received from State Parks and Recreation that showed all the preserves in the Central Valley. Also along on the trip was a book written by 14th Century alchemist Giordano Bruno, which Connor read aloud while her husband drove.

After this poem was read, Connor entertained a question from an audience member who asked her why she was so interested in alchemy in her poems. To which, Connor replied, “It’s like chemistry with a sense of humor.”She said she was also drawn to alchemy because, unlike chemistry, things still had powers. She also mentioned how alchemy also had correspondences between things, connections that allow one to connect in a substantive way with a larger world of objects. She mentioned that this kind of connection enlivens people in a way that chemistry cannot approach.

The next poem that Connor read was called “Hearth,”and it was derived from an incident relating to her two older sisters, one who is 12 years older, the other who is 14 years older. This was followed by “At Tommy Dollard’s House,” a poem about coming to terms with the impulse of male violence.

Connor then switched to reading from a series of prose poems. The first one was called, “Relations,” and it focused on her lifelong fascination with the shape of a mouth and how that shape informed the kind of person one might be, the kind of mental landscape one inhabited. This was followed by “The Theory of Snow”is a meditation on a winter scene that allows the speaker to acknowledge her own loneliness and her bitterness, which she then roots in “the clearing of a man.”

Nest up was “The Visiting Room,” a powerful story about an inmate struggling with his life-long grief for an early mistake he had made.

Finally, Connor ended with one of her signature pieces, “One February Eve on the Six O’ Clock News.”

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Alan Williamson at Bistro 33



In the dimly lit Bistro 33 in Davis, Andy Jones and Brad Henderson (aka Beau Hamel) emerged as hosts for a reading by poet/critic Alan Williamson.

Brad started off the evening by reading “Tonight, my friend, Joe Wenderoth, & I Are Watching UFC on Pay-per-view & We Don't Give a Rip What Our Colleagues at UC Davis Think” dedicated to Joe Wenderoth and inspired by a trip to the Squaw Valley Writer’s Conference where there was a wrestling camp running concurrently with the writer’s conference. The piece chronicled Henderson’s past as a championship high school and college wrestler, and it included a Freudian slip where one of the intense male-on-male scenes that, as Andy Jones later quipped, got a little “brokeback.”

Andy then read two poems that come from his “A Poem a Day in the Month of May” catalog, which has found Andy looking to increase his poetry production in May. The first was entitled “Ascension.”The second was called “Pre-history of the Teenager,” and it featured enough adult content to render it unreadable to his daughter Geneva.

Alan Williamson, in one of his rare public readings in Davis, then took to the podium and read Small College, All Male, Early 1960’s from his book Res Publica.

Then he read “Fallings From Us, Vanishings,”which took its title from Wordsworth’s “Intimations Ode.” He followed that poem with a poem by Gary Snyder from Danger on Peaks called “One Day in Late Summer.”

He then read “Fantasia on a Medieval Latin Poem,” and he ended with a new work that is, as yet, unpublished. It was a piece that was a study of a koan and one’s struggles to come to a conclusion with the paradox contained within a koan. One arrives at a conclusion not through intellect. The koan in question was this: does a door have buddha nature or not? The response to this was “mu” which could mean “no” in everyday usage or in another, higher meaning: unask this question as it poses a false dichotomy. The poem was entitled “Empty Sky,” and Alan Williamson read excerpts from it.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Sacramento Literary Calendar for May 2007

1 Tuesday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Poetry Workshop. 7:30 pm. Free.
Hart Senior Center. 27th & J.
Facilitated by Danyen Powell. (530) 756-6228.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.

The Moore Time for Poetry TV series presents
Slam poet Chaz from Los Angeles.
Cablecast on channel 17, Comcast Cable @ 5 am.

3 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged @ Luna's.
Featured Poets: TBA. Open mic after.
1414 16th Street. 8 pm. Free.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill.
lunascafe.com

4 Friday
All are invited to Escritores del Nuevo Sol's_Evening of Short Stories. Presenting writer's
include Juan Carillo, Dr. Fausto Avendano,
Minerva Daniel, Graciela B. Ramirez, and others.
@ La Raza Galeria Posada, 7:30 pm.
Charge: $5 or as you can afford.
1024 22nd Street. For info. call Graciela Ramirez @
456-5323 or JoAnn Anglin

5 Saturday
Escritores del Nuevo Sol's writing group workshop and potluck.
11 am @ La Raza Galeria Posada. 1024 22nd St.
Bring up to 3 pages of your work to read if you wish.
For more info. call Graciela Ramirez @ (916) 456-5323 or
JoAnn Anglin

6 Sunday
PoemSpirits featuring guest reader Rhony Bhopia, published
author and founder of ShiluS Publications. Co-host Tom Goff
will present the work of Rabindranath Tagore,1913 Nobel
Laureate. Free and open to the public; open mic after.
Light refreshments provided. Bring a favorite poem to share,
yours or another's. @ UUSS 2425 Sierra Boulevard. uuss.org
Contact: Tom Goff or Nora Staklis: 481-3312 or JoAnn Anglin

7 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Board of Directors Meeting.
All are welcome to attend.
1719 25th Street. _5:45-7 pm.
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Presents American River College writing class w/David Merson.
HQ for the Arts. 7:30 pm. Free.
1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Bob Stanley.

8 Tuesday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Poetry Workshop. 7:30 pm. Free.
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Facilitated by Danyen Powell. (530) 756-6228.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.
Bistro 33 Poetry Series.
8:30 pm. Open mic after. Free.
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 F Street.

9 Wednesday
Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour.
5 pm. Hosted by Andy Jones.
KDVS90.3FM

10 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged @ Luna's.
Featured Poets: TBA. Open mic after.
1414 16th Street. 8 pm. Free.
Hosted by Geoffrey Neill.
lunascafe.com

14 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Presents CSUS creative writing class.
HQ for the Arts. 7:30 pm. Free.
1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Bob Stanley and Indigo Moor.

15 Tuesday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Poetry Workshop. 7:30 pm. Free.
Hart Senior Center. 27th & J.
Facilitated by Danyen Powell. (530) 756-6228.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.

The Moore Time for Poetry TV series presents
Slam poet Chaz from Los Angeles.
Cablecast on channel 17, Comcast Cable @ 5 am.

17 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged @ Luna's.
Featured Poets: TBA. Open mic after.
1414 16th Street. 8 pm. Free.
Hosted by frank andrick.
lunascafe.com

19 Saturday
Underground Poetry Center.
Featuring Sean Miller, Bill Carr & Layla Holmes.
7-9 pm @ Underground Books.
2814 35th Street. $3.00
Hosted by Terry Moore.

20 Sunday
Third Sunday Writing Group.
Free creative writing workshop.
10th & U, Sacramento. 1-3 pm.
Contact Nancy Walker for more info. @
oolalaparee03@yahoo.com

21 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Presents a poetry reading by Nancy Walker to
celebrate The Third Sunday Writers' Group 13th Anniversary.
Also includes readings by Rebecca Morrison, Joe & Susan Finkleman,
Theresa McCourt, Kimberly White, JoAnn Anglin, Pearl Stein Stelinsky & others.
HQ for the Arts. 7:30 pm. Free.
1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Rebecca Morrison.

22 Tuesday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Poetry Workshop. 7:30 pm. Free.
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Facilitated by Danyen Powell. (530) 756-6228.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.

Bistro 33 Poetry Series.
8:30 pm. Open mic after. Free.
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 F Street.

23 Wednesday
Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour.
5 pm. Hosted by Andy Jones.
KDVS90.3FM

24 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged @ Luna's.
Featured Poets: TBA. Open mic after.
1414 16th Street. 8 pm. Free.
Hosted by B.L. Kennedy.
lunascafe.com

26 Saturday
"The Show" Poetry Series.
9 pm. Wo'se Community Center.
2863 35th Street.
Info. T. Mo at (916) 455-POET.

28 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Presents William O'Daly (Night of Translation).
HQ for the Arts. 7:30 pm. Free.
1719 25th Street.
Hosted by Tim Kahl.
[CANCELED. Rescheduled for this Fall]

29 Tuesday
Sacramento Poetry Center.
Poetry Workshop. 7:30 pm. Free.
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Facilitated by Danyen Powell. (530) 756-6228.
Bring 15-20 copies of your one-page poem.

31 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged @ Luna's.
Featured Poets: TBA. Open mic after.
1414 16th Street. 8 pm. Free.
Hosted by TBA.
lunascafe.com

BEN LERNER—MAYDAY at UC Davis

In Voorhies Hall Ben Lerner appeared before the faithful UC Davis crowd to read from his most recent book Angle of Yaw. The crowd was quiet and attentive as they listened to Joshua Clover kick off the evening, in honor of Mayday, with a rendition of Allen Ginsberg’s “Kral Majales,” who read the piece with a decidedly understated “I am the King of May” compared to a gleeful exuberance one imagines attached to the youthful Ginsberg cavorting through Czechoslovakia during the year of the Prague Spring.

Then Ben Lerner took to the stage and offered to the denizens of that dimly lit room several pieces from Angle of Yaw and a new poem that was still in progress, still under revision. He started off the evening with “Begetting Stadia,” an homage to football stadiums and the the age of the spectacle. Then he read several selections of prose poems from Angle of Yaw. Finally, he read a new piece that he prefaced as being untitled and unfinished. Then lowering our expectations for it even more, he described what he saw as the movement and technique in the poem, both of which he expected the audience to be underwhelmed by. However, in my opinion, the new poem was the highlight of the evening. It seemed to be read with more conviction and attention, perhaps because he is still in the middle of the heat of this poem. If this last piece is any indication of the body of Lerner’s works to come, we have a lot to look forward to with this exceptional young talent.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

PETER GRANDBOIS at SPC on April 23, 2007



Peter Grandbois arrived at the SPC tanned and rested after his recent talk at the San Francisco Public Library, but still a little on edge in preparation for his public lecture on Thursday the 26th for the appearance of Sherman Alexie and Leslie Marmon Silko for the California Lectures series.

Peter read a brief section from his book The Gravedigger that he had not read before in public. It featured the hero, Juan Rodrigo, the gravedigger, who realizes that he is going to fall in love with his 3rd wife, Rosalita. The image that cements this feeling for Juan Rodrigo is Rosalita doing something rather rude to her former husband’s grave. [See Chapter 8.]

He also read a new short story, one which he had not read aloud in public before. It was a story that he described as being a little different for him. It didn’t fall into the usual category of “magic realism” or “surrealism” which much of his work could be labeled as. Instead, Grandbois described the piece as “American funhouse hyper-realism.” Employing his usual mode of listening to music while he writes in order to set the mood for the world he is entering, “Wait Your Turn” [17:04] came to life while Grandbois was listening to Sinatra.

Monday, April 16, 2007

SACRAMENTO POETRY CENTER WRITER'S CONFERENCE

SACRAMENTO POETRY CENTER WRITER'S CONFERENCE

SPC Writers’ Conference 2007
All events at 1719 25th Street, Sacramento

April 20 - Friday night reading and reception 7-9pm
Heather Hutcheson, Andy Jones, Danny Romero, Brad Henderson.
Free to the public

April 21 - Saturday workshops 9am to 4pm
$35 conference fee for all day Saturday
8:30 – 9:00 Coffee and muffins

9:00 – 9:45 Panel Discussion –
Andy Jones, Camille Norton, Gail Entrekin, Danny Romero

10:00 – 11:45 Small workshop sessions:
Andy Jones/Brad Henderson
Gail Entrekin – “The Taste of Poetry”
Camille Norton – "The Muse of History: Writing the Past into the Present."
Heather Hutcheson – “Where Poems Begin”
Tim Kahl – “The Speaking Voice as Poetic Tool”

12:00 – 1:00 Lunch break

1:00 – 1:20 X - Sac City Ethnic Theatre Workshop)

1:30 – 2:45 Afternoon workshop sessions
Danny Romero – Writing Memoir
Angela Dee Alforque – Performing Spoken Word

3:00 – 4:00
Participants group reading and celebration.



SPC Writers’ Conference Presenters

Angela Dee Alforque is an assistant professor at Sacramento City College, and is the director of !X – the Sac City Ethnic Theater Workshop. Angela also serves on the Academic Senate at SCC. She received her MA from CSU Sacramento in Multi-Cultural American History & Performance.

Gail Rudd Entrekin teaches English and creative writing at Sierra College in Grass Valley. Her collections of poems include Change (Will Do You Good), from Poetic Matrix Press, which was nominated for the California Book Awards, You Notice the Body (Hip Pocket Press, 1998), and John Danced (Berkeley Poets Workshop & Press, 1984). Poetry Editor of Hip Pocket Press since 2000, she is also editor of the web page Women’s Writing Salon at www.nevadacountyartscouncil.org and producer of the Women’s Writing Salon reading series at Jason’s in Grass Valley.

Heather Hutcheson earned a BA in English from UC Davis and an MA in Creative Writing from CSU Sacramento. Her master’s project was a book-length collection of poetry, Risk Poetry. Heather spends the majority of her time outside of the classroom working to promote the arts in Sacramento. She teaches creative writing workshops for families, and, for nine years, she volunteered as the Managing Editor of Poetry Now, a monthly poetry publication. Heather has had her fiction and non-fiction published nationally and has won several awards for her poetry.

Brad Henderson (AKA, beau hamel) has published his poetry and fiction in Dominion Review, Blue Unicorn, Hayden's Ferry Review, California Quarterly, and other journals. He holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from University of Southern California, and is the author the Phi Kappa Phi Award winning novel, Drums, (John Daniel/Fithian Press 1997) and the dual chapbook of poetry, Split Stock, (Natsoulas Press 2006), co-written with Andy Jones. Henderson currently teaches writing full-time at University of California, Davis. He is co-editor of the forthcoming poetry anthology, Disturbing Minds: Poems of Desire & Desire [2008] with a foreword by Dana Gioia. He is also one of the co-founders of UC Davis' new critical-poetic school of "literary hauntedness." Brad recently completed the manuscript for his second book of poetry, Secret Cowboy at the Raw Bar, which explores addiction-ism, as well as "the American Dream" and "the American West" as tainted modern myths.

Andy Jones teaches writing and literature classes at UC Davis. Andy also serves on the Campus Media Board and acts as Faculty Advisor to The Voice, the Undergraduate Medical Journal at UC Davis. His radio show "Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour" airs on KDVS, 90.3 FM, Wednesday afternoons at 5pm. In February, 2006, John Natsoulas Press published Andy’s book of poems Split Stock, which was co-authored with Brad Henderson.

Tim Kahl’s work has been published or is forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, American Letters & Commentary, Berkeley Poetry Review, Indiana Review, Limestone, Nimrod, South Dakota Quarterly, The Journal, The Spoon River Poetry Review, and dozens of other journals in the U.S. He has translated Austrian avant-gardist, Friederike Mayröcker; Brazilian poet, Lêdo Ivo; and the poems of the Portuguese language’s only Nobel Laureate, José Saramago. He also appears as Victor Schnickelfritz at the poetry and poetics blog The Great American Pinup (http://greatamericanpinup.blogspot.com/). His first collection entitled Possessing Yourself is forthcoming from Word Tech Press.

Camille Norton's book Corruption, was published by Harper Collins in 2005 and was the winner of the 2004 National Poetry Series Open Competition. She is Professor of English at The University of the Pacific, Stockton.

Danny Romero is the author of the novel Calle 10 (Mercury House). He teaches in the English Department at Sacramento City College.


Special thanks to:
Alliance Francaise
Members of the Sacramento Poetry Center
Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission

This event was partially funded with a grant from Poets and Writers,
which is supported by the James Irvine Foundation.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Reading for the Sacramento Poetry Contest Winners—April 9. 2006

Sacramento Poetry Contest Winners read from their works on Monday April 9, 2007

Do Gentry started the evening off and read “The Auction,” “Mirage,” and ”Travel Diary.”

Francis Kakugawa read “Sansei Woman”

Sansei Woman

I am generations of women
Looking in at layers of silk kimonos,
Muffled giggles, koto movements,
Knowing they can only be
Mere images of desire.
I am generations of women
Waiting to be dragonfly wings,
A maple leaf, spiraling snowflake,
A cherry blossom,
Released and detached from
Generations of cultural clasps.
I am generations of women,
Suppressed in thin yukata
Stuck ankle deep in rice fields,
Scarecrows on wooden stakes.
Denied, yet desiring wantonness
Beneath layers of silk.
I am woman,
Suppressed,
Dying.

Tom Goff read Independence Trail “Watercolors at Negro Bar” and “To an Afflicted one”

Barbara Jennings-Link read “Montana Wheat Field”

Theresa McCourt read “Along the Canal”

Then Julia Connor, the judge for the contest, talked about the selection process. She said it was the 4th one she has judged in the last 18 months. Upon first reading Connor said she made notes to myself about what was commendable in each piece. then she wondered whether she should just “total” the commendations. this seemed too formulaic to her, and poetry shouldn’t be formulaic. One of the big questions that nags her is what do you do with a largely narrative work vs. one that is not so narrative. Then one looks for jewels. But Connor said she didn’t want all rubies and diamonds. She was looking for different kinds of jewels. She was looking for a poem that said something very briefly, but said it completely. Paraphrasing Pound, Connor stated that poetry condenses things in our mind the way dreams do. The significance is built in the poem as opposed to being merely discursive in addition to the poem. This is what Cathleen Williams’s “Ferry” epitomized.

In choosing runner-up Marie Reynolds’s “Offseason” Connor said it used extremely adroit enjambment so that one line suspends itself until it is resolved in the next line. It tells a story, but it doesn’t say too much. Connor stated that of 4 recent contests that she judged, this one was the most difficult. That was a good sign for Sacramento Poetry, where there is a sound voice but also a diverse one. Connor was quick to note though that poetry is not competitive; it is inclusive. She added, “Try to leave out the parts of yourself that you have problems with, and you will defeat your work.”A poet should probably always put “One dark secret. One obsession. One thing of which I am ashamed” on the CV . And in the land of poetry one gets the job anyway.

Marie Reynolds then read “Offseason”

Cathleen Williams ended the evening with “Ferry” and “The State of California”

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

GERALD HASLAM at Sacramento City College



Gerald Haslam appeared at the Little Theatre Stage at Sacramento City College wearing a striped shirt and a gray fleece vest with a “volunteer” patch for the National Parks Service on it. It was kind of like Piet Mondrian’s Broadway Boogie-Woogie meets a Cabela’s catalog.

True to form, Mr. Haslam’s salt-of-the-earth persona shown through in his reading. He perched his glasses on the top of his head while he provided the intros to his stories and peered at the audience. Then he scooted them down over his eyes to read, offering up a sly, knowing grin at the parts in the story where he was reeling his audience in. Bait cast, he kept reeling until most in the crowd were assured of his master fisherman status.

He started out reading the prologue from Grace Period, Haslam’s recent novel about a soured love affair which then leads to a second chance for the male character in the book. The prologue featured the story of two young souls finding each other in college and eventually tying the knot. However, over the course, of the prologue, the audience was given several hints of the not-so-rosy future-to-come for the couple.

Then he read another section from Grace Period where the main character goes to watch a Portuguese bullfight that takes place in the middle of the Valley at Eskalon.

The third section of the Grace Period that Haslam read took place after the main character was battling cancer as a senior and staying at the home of one of his grown-up children.

By far, though, the highlight of the reading was Haslam’s “Mal de Ojo” a wonderful character-driven romp through the old neighborhood in the eyes of young Gilbert Sullivan whose future appears bright to the crazy Armenian visiting from out of town.

Haslam then read a short piece with a self-imposed 500 word limit about the importance of public libraries entitled “What Horton Hatched.”

The final offering by Haslam was the story entitled “Homecoming,” which featured a Japanese-American soldier who had returned home to California after the Second World War and feels slighted by the prejudice he encounters.

Running slightly over the allotted time, Haslam, always a man of modesty and one who is thoroughly considerate, apologized for his excess. He also wanted to make sure that he knew that students might have to go before he finished and that that would be all right.

His version of California signed, sealed and delivered, Haslam exited the Little Theater ready to take up his position as another character in the great deadpan Valley, perhaps even as a track coach from many years ago for Albert Garcia’s wife, Terry.

SACRAMENTO POETRY CENTER's Writer's Conference

April 20
FRIDAY NIGHT READING
AND RECEPTION 7-9PM
Free!

Hors d’oeuvres and
drinks 7 - 7:30 pm

Reading 7:30 – 9:00pm
Heather Hutcheson,
Andy Jones,
Danny Romero,
Brad Henderson,
Gail Entrekin

April 21
SATURDAY WORKSHOPS 9AM TO 4PM
8:30 – 9:00 Coffee and muffins
9:00 – 9:45 Panel discussion:
Andy Jones, Camille Norton,
Gail Entrekin, Danny Romero
10:00 – 11:45 Small workshop sessions
Andy Jones & Brad Henderson
Gail Entrekin – “The Taste of Poetry”
Camille Norton
Heather Hutcheson – “Where Poems Start"
Tim Kahl – “The Speaking Voice as Poetic Tool”
12:00 – 1:00 Lunch break
1:00 – 1:20 Group performance
!X — Sac City Ethnic Theatre Workshop
1:30 – 2:45 Afternoon workshop sessions
Danny Romero – Writing Memoir
Angela Dee Alforque – Performing Spoken Word
3:00 – 4:00 Participants group reading and celebration.

Registration fee
$25 for SPC members
$35 for non-members
(combined registration fee and
annual membership is $50)
Friday night reading is free—
donations requested.

Sacramento Literary Calendar for April 2007

1 Sunday
PoemSpirits featuring guest
reader Tim Bellows, Sierra
College professor. Co-host JoAnn
Anglin will also offer a brief
presentation on renowned poet
Jane Hirshfield.Free. Open mic,
light refreshments provided.
Bring a favorite poem to share,
yours or another’s. UUSS, 2425
Sierra Blvd. www.uuss.org. Info:
Tom Goff or Nora Staklis: 481-3312, or
JoAnn Anglin: 451-1372.

2 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center hosts
“Poetic Justice,” a fundraiser for
frank andrick. HQ for the Arts.
1719 25th St. Bob Stanley
hosts. $10 at the door. Raffle,
poetry, reception, and music at 6
pm; reading starts at 7:30 pm.

3 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

5 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged features
Sacramento Poet Laureate, Julia
Connor at Luna’s Café.....
1414 16th Street. Info: 441-3931
or www.lunascafe.com. Free.
Festivities begin at 8pm and
there will be an open mic as well.
Hosted by Mario Ellis Hill.

7 Saturday
All are invited to Escritores del
Nuevo Sol’s writing group
workshop and potluck. 11am. at
La Raza Galeria Posada, Bring
up to 3 pages of your work to
read if you wish. 1024 22nd
Street, Sacramento. For info call
Graciela Ramirez, 456-5323 or
joannpen@comcast.net

9 Monday
SPC Board of Directors meets at
HQ for the Arts; 1719 25th Street.
5:45-7:00pm.

Sacramento Poetry Center
presents 2007 Poetry Contest
winners. 7:30 pm at HQ for the
Arts. Bob Stanley and Indigo
Moor host. Readings by
Cathleen Williams, Marie
Reynolds, Frances
Kakugawa, Tom Goff,
and more.

10 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your one-
page poem. Info: Danyen, (530)
756-6228

Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33 in
Historic Davis City Hall, 226 “F”
Street, 3rd and “F” Streets in
Davis.

11 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and
Technology Hour, host Andy
Jones, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or
subscribe to podcast at
www.kdvs.org.

Rattlesnake Press will celebrate
its third birthday by presenting
D.R. Wagner at The Book
Collector, 1008 24th St.,
Sacramento. 7:30-9 PM to
celebrate the release of his new
chapbook of poetry and art,
Where the Stars are Kept. Also
released that night will be a
littlesnake broadside and
interview from Ann
Menebroker, to launch the
new Rattlesnake Interview
Series. Refreshments and a
read-around will follow; bring
your own poems or somebody
else’s. More info:
kathykieth@hotmail.com

12 Thursday
Luna’s Poetry Unplugged
features TBA. Open mic before/
after. Hosted by Geoffrey Neill.
8pm at Luna’s Café, 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

15 Sunday
Third Sunday Writing Group
Free creative writing workshop.
10th & U, Sacramento.
Contact Nancy Walker
oolalaparee03@yahoo.com

16 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents 2007 High School
Contest winners. Hear the next
generation of Sacramento Poets!
7:30 pm at HQ for the Arts.
Rebecca Morrison hosts.

17 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your
one-page poem. Info: Danyen,
(530) 756-6228

19 Thursday
Poetry Unplugged features poet
B.L. Kennedy. He melds
poetry and picture poems that
bring painting, illustration, and
wordplay into a visual context,
and is also a reviewer and
columnist of poetry and prose.
Begins at 8 pm and there will be
an open mic as well. 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.
Hosted by frank andrick.

21 Saturday
Underground Poetry Series.
Open mic. 7-9pm, $3.00.
Underground Books, 2814 35th
Street (35th and Broadway.
Hosted by Terry Moore.
www.terrymoore.info)

23 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Peter Grandbois.
7:30 pm at HQ for the Arts. Tim
Kahl hosts.

24 Tuesday
SPC Poetry Workshop, 7:30pm,
Hart Senior Center, 27th & J.
Bring 15 - 20 copies of your
one-page poem. Info: Danyen,
(530) 756-6228
Bistro 33 Poetry Series. 8:30 pm
Open Mic after. Bistro 33; His-
toric Davis City Hall, 226 “F” St,
3rd & “F” Streets. Davis.

25 Wednesday
Dr. Andy’s Poetry and
Technology Hour, host Andy
Jones, 5pm, KDVS-90.3 FM or
subscribe to podcast at
www.kdvs.org.

26 Thursday
Borders in Laguna presents An
Evening of Poetry to celebrate
Poetry History Month. This is a
joint event sponsored by the
CRC English Department and
Borders Books. Featured poets:
Indigo Moor, Lawana
Cager, Lisa Abraham,
Leslie Gale, and Emmanual
Sigauke. 7:00 pm. Borders
Books. 7215 Laguna
Boulevard, Elk Grove.

Poetry Unplugged features
poets D.R. Wagner and Neeli
Cherkovski — 2 famous and
accomplished poets, publishers,
educators, and mentors. 8pm;
includes an open mic. Hosted
by B.L. Kennedy. 1414 16th
Street. Info: 441-3931 or
www.lunascafe.com. Free.

28 Saturday
Sal Mimeo & The Process
Rebels without Applause
Tour of Words 2007
John Dorsey, S.A. Griffin,
Bill Roberts, David Smith,
Scott Wannberg. 8pm. The
Book Collector. 1008 24th St.
www.poems-for-all.com

“The Show” Poetry Series. 9 pm
at Wo’se Community Center (Off
35th and Broadway), 2863 35th
Street, Sacramento. $5.00.
Info: T.Mo at (916) 455-POET.

29 Sunday
Luna’s hosts The Pomo
Literati, a two hour poetry/
spoken word radio program
series to celebrate National
Poetry Month. Extreme poetic
rarities, pre-beat, to beat, to way
past beat with beyond post-
modern spoken word, poetry
and soundscapes. Also a
tribute honorarium of works by
S.F. Poet Philip Lamantia. 2-4
pm. Hosted and produced by
frank adnck.

30 Monday
Sacramento Poetry Center
presents Jeff Knorr’s Sac City
poetry class. 7:30 pm at HQ for
the Arts. Bob Stanley hosts.